First love goes bad in Nay’s mesmerizing debut.
Cove, Vermont, is a tidy town, and 15-year-old Angela Petitjean felt very out of place when she moved there 11 years ago with her well-meaning but cloying parents. Then she met Hamish “HP” Parker. HP looked like a young Harrison Ford and lit up every room he walked into, whereas Angela was quiet and thoughtful. They became the best of friends and stayed that way until a graduation trip to the lake, when they realized they were in love. When an unwilling Angela's parents make her go abroad for freshman year at Oxford, HP goes over to visit her, but Angela becomes incensed when she spots him flirting at a ball with Saskia, a very petite, very Australian blonde. After Angela gets caught in a bit of revenge canoodling with her hapless, and smitten, friend Freddy Montgomery, HP goes back to the U.S. in a snit with Saskia in tow and, to Angela’s horror, eventually marries her. Angela puts on a brave face and even says yes when asked to be godmother to their new baby. After Angela’s parents get divorced, HP invites Angela to move in with them instead of living with her mother—an ill-advised arrangement, to be sure. Things inevitably come to a head (boy do they!), and Angela moves out. Now, Saskia is missing. Homicide Detective J. Novak is convinced Saskia is dead and that Angela is responsible, but they don’t have a body. Is Angela a murderer or just a woman with a broken heart who never quite picked up the pieces? Angela’s voice is wry and compelling, revealing a girl who never quite lived up to her parents’ expectations and a young woman who felt incomplete without HP and has never quite been able to let go.
Nay expertly spins an insidious, clever web, perfectly capturing the soaring heights and crushing lows of first love and how the loss of that love can make even the sanest people a little crazy. Carve out some time for this riveting, one-sitting read.