Two teens fall for each other, but their love seems star-crossed because of the sins of their parents.
References to Shakespeare lift this interesting romance a bit above the ordinary. Hadley’s family life has been strained ever since her university-professor father had a yearlong affair with one of his students. Sam misses his father, who left when his mother also had an affair. Hadley and her family have just moved to Nashville, and she immediately finds herself in trouble at her new school for making out with a boy who didn’t tell her he had a girlfriend. She meets Sam, and the two are instantly attracted, but Sam quickly realizes that Hadley’s father was his mother’s lover, plunging Sam and Hadley into a Shakespearean plot tangle, as Sam, afraid he’ll lose Hadley, doesn’t tell her the truth about their parents. Complicating the issue is Sam’s emotionally fragile little sister, Olivia, who has befriended Hadley. Blake balances the characters’ romance against the real dilemma they face. She writes a believable, emotionally satisfying romance that relies on realistic characterizations rather than supermodel good looks, fashion, and standard plot devices. It’s a refreshing change from the far more common standard romances that so often become formulaic, and the well-integrated literary references are a bonus.
A smart, satisfying romance. (Romance. 12-18)