Pippa Greene is back in her hometown trying to sort out her confusing relationship with Dylan.
He was mostly out of sight in Depth of Field (2014), probably not a bad place for him. He’s taking a gap year before attending college; Pippa’s still in high school. The main reason for Dylan’s year off is that he’s just finished cancer therapy, a secret he’s shared with Pippa but few others. Meanwhile, he’s active with traveling rock bands and may be forming a romantic connection to fellow rocker Muse. Pippa is frustratingly slow to understand what readers will recognize immediately: Dylan has lost interest in her. Supported by her best friend, Dace, and fellow photographer Ben, distracted by sorting through the photographs taken by her recently deceased father, and at odds with her concerned mother, Pippa just barely muddles along. By the end, it’s clear that Ben harbors romantic feelings for her, surely setting up another emotional roller coaster in a coming volume. Lacking the inside look at the photography world that enlivened the previous outing—although Pippa keeps camera in hand here, too—romance is required to carry the full load of the plot. But Dylan is disappointing, and there isn’t enough of the promising Ben.
Pippa’s fresh, up-to-date voice is muted by her misery, making for gray-tone images rather than the dynamism of color. (Fiction. 11-18)