BY YOUR SIDE by Kasie West


Age Range: 13 - 18
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After a weekend trapped in a library together, two teens from different social stratospheres are drawn to one another.

All Autumn, a white senior, wanted to do was go to the bathroom. She had been studying with her friends in the library before it closed, excited to go build a campfire in the canyon. Instead, she finds herself locked in the library, her friends gone and her phone with them. But she’s not alone: Dax, a white loner with a bad reputation, has purposely stayed behind, unaware of her presence. It’s a three-day weekend, and the two while the hours away with games and standoffs, each wary of trusting the other. As Autumn warms to Dax, he remains distant, and her friends never show up. When the reason for their absence is revealed and Autumn’s anxiety disorder spirals, it’s Dax who saves the day. Afterward, however, Dax pretends they’re strangers, and Autumn’s friends have expectations for who she should be with, and it sure isn’t Dax. The feeling of calm that Dax brought out in Autumn pulls her to him anyway, and soon she must decide what she really wants. Though quite slow to start, Autumn and Dax’s relationship burns brightly. Autumn’s struggles with anxiety are equally dynamic. If only the rest of her life—her friends and other love interest—were equally engaging.

A simmering romance that gives weight to mental health and hard choices. (Fiction. 13-18)

Pub Date: Feb. 14th, 2017
ISBN: 978-0-06-245586-4
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: HarperTeen
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15th, 2016


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