Two former best friends raised by families with markedly different values take a trip to Greece in this poignant story that is centered around themes of sexuality, acceptance and belonging.
High school junior Colette has grown weary of following the rules dictated to her by her conservative, religious family and longs for more physical involvement with her boyfriend and a chance to break out of her nice-girl role. And though she has other friends, she has felt adrift since Sadie, her closest childhood friend, mysteriously dropped her years earlier. When Sadie extends the unexpected and perplexing invitation to join her family on the Greek island of Santorini, Colette feels compelled to go both out of loyalty and to shake up her own life. Emotionally rich characters make this an engaging drama that is as much about people finding places within their families as it is about the damage done by rigid adults to vulnerable kids. A romance that develops between Colette and one of Sadie’s older brothers is sweetly believable, though the eventual reveal of the overcomplicated reasoning behind Sadie’s selection of Colette to come on the trip is less so.
Vivid descriptions of the unusual landscape of Santorini will fascinate readers looking for a good travelogue, and the perceptive and heartfelt relationship dynamics will only add to the appeal. (Fiction. 14-18)