SAYING GOODBYE TO LONDON by Julie Burtinshaw

SAYING GOODBYE TO LONDON

Age Range: 13 - 17
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Two Vancouver, British Columbia, teens discover they’re expecting a baby and must overcome differences to choose ideal adoptive parents.

A couple of weeks before school starts, awkward, inexperienced 15-year-old Francis Sloan meets bold and beautiful 16-year-old Sawyer Martin at a summer dance. They fall for each other quickly, and on their fifth date, they begin to have sex. By the time school starts and public school–student Sawyer meets private school–student Francis’ relatively posh family, she’s already beginning to feel queasy. Weeks tick by before Sawyer verifies she’s pregnant, narrowing her options. Complicating matters is Francis’ immature reluctance to accept he’s the father due to his unwarranted jealousy of Sawyer’s best friend, Jack (who is clearly gay, but somehow Francis is shocked by the revelation). While the narrative predominantly focuses on Francis, the point of view skips around, sometimes in a jarring manner that forces the rereading of passages. Although Sawyer’s pregnancy struggles ring true, it’s difficult to empathize with Francis. Both Jack, who has an abusive father, and Francis’ best friend, Kevin, who’s grieving a loving but terminally ill father, are more compelling characters than the frustrating father-to-be protagonist. The significant characters are all evidently white. There’s not a whole lot to recommend this book, except as a pro-adoption addition to an issues-title list.

This flawed teen-pregnancy novel suffers from inconsistent characterization and confusing third-person narration. (Fiction. 13-17)

Pub Date: March 14th, 2017
ISBN: 978-1-77260-029-2
Page count: 266pp
Publisher: Second Story Press
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1st, 2017




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