Two best friends attempt to reconnect after a year apart, but their secrets might divide them forever.
Riya and Abby have been best friends since preschool, but their friendship is shaken when Riya spends a year in Berlin with her parents. Living abroad opens Indian-American Riya’s eyes to a whole new world, while, back in California, white Abby copes with her parents’ split up, feeling forsaken. With the financial support of her grandmother, Riya proposes a whirlwind European vacation to allow the best friends to get past their estrangement. As they jet from Italy to Switzerland to Germany, Scotland to Iceland to England, with only Riya’s British-Indian cousin Neel as a chaperone, the two friends slowly work to repair their friendship. But Riya still has a secret to reveal, and Abby finds herself sharing a secret with Neel. When those secrets come out, Abby and Riya must decide whether to give up on their lifelong friendship or to find a way to keep evolving without losing the bedrock of their friendship. This novel in two voices keeps the pages turning as each protagonist tries to figure out if their friendship still works for her. A classic case of opposites attracting, both Abby and Riya are well-drawn and dynamic characters.
A nuanced, positive vision of an evolving friendship. (Fiction. 14-18)