A fortuneteller once warned Maris Brown that she would find love and be dead before age 18—could this be the fateful summer?
Maris’ summer with her father’s new family is supposed to be a break from the trouble she’d been getting into back in Phoenix, where she lives with her mother. But when she stumbles into a dangerous encounter on an island, she finds herself immersed in a game of intrigue that reaches closer to her and her family than she ever suspected. To complicate things even more, she finds herself falling for the boy her stepsister is dating, Edison, who is part of an ultrarich family that treats the Browns to expensive parties, boat rides, and days on the beach. Can Maris figure out a way to protect her family and her love without sacrificing herself? Bass’ (What’s Broken Between Us, 2015, etc.) descriptions of lavish parties and rich people are as tantalizing as the fresh lobster they consume. However, the plot is by turns too convenient and too hazy while the characters, all coded as white, seem stuck in their roles. There is no sense of lessons learned or even avoided—instead, the main characters remain static from beginning to finish despite the onslaught of revelations they are dealt toward the end.
An uneven look at the ways money doesn’t guarantee freedom. (Thriller. 13-16)