It’s going to be Kendra’s “breakout summer”—or so she tells herself following her junior year.
But her special, life-changing summer doesn’t get off to an auspicious beginning when she observes her father with another woman. Although following him could bring on one of the panic attacks she’s been prone to since a near drowning as a 7-year-old, Kendra becomes fixated on snooping deeper and deeper into her father’s affair, even repeatedly sneaking into his mistress’s home to take photographs. On yet another breathless foray, Kendra steals from her and her elementary school–aged daughter. Meanwhile, she’s developing a hot relationship with Will, the guy of her dreams—she thinks, even though there are plenty of hints that he’s a sexual parasite, unlike reliable, loving Bo, her best friend’s brother. Kendra blithely ignores the fact that Will is already going with another girl—oblivious that her own disagreeable behavior is ironically mimicking her father’s errant ways. Set on the southern coast of a partially fictionalized Maine among a plenitude of superficial, well-off, apparently white kids (based on cover art, as descriptions of the characters are nearly nonexistent), this tale effortlessly achieves banality. Even when Kendra discovers the true nature of her father’s affair and her parent’s relationship, it just serves as an unsurprising affirmation of the depthless nature of the characters.
A soapy romance for an uncertain audience. (Fiction. 12-18)