A teen relives prom night over and over and over again.
Best friends JJ and Lucy promised to attend senior prom together. While on his way to pick Lucy up to head over to the big dance, JJ encounters Melody, a teen on her way to her own prom who needs some roadside assistance. One thing leads to another and JJ ends up unable to make it to prom, breaking Lucy’s heart. The next day, JJ discovers that it’s prom night...again. And then again. And then, again. JJ is forced to relive his prom night several times, making tweaks here and there along the way, trying to please not just Lucy, but also Melody and a few of his friends. The balancing act exhausts JJ, and the repetitive nature of the book will leave readers a bit exhausted as well. JJ is a bit of a dip, desperate to please everyone and completely oblivious to the obvious feelings Lucy has for him. Their relationship is sketched out well enough, but there’s nothing here that sets the book apart from typical “high school friends figure out they love each other” tales. The Groundhog Day story mechanics don’t elevate the material enough: There just isn’t enough variation in the series of events to maintain readers’ interest. JJ and Lucy are white, JJ has two moms, and there’s some diversity among the peripheral characters.
A familiar story wrinkled only
slightly. (Fiction. 12-16)