HAPPY ENDINGS ARE ALL ALIKE by Sandra Scoppettone

HAPPY ENDINGS ARE ALL ALIKE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

High school seniors Jaret Tyler (a girl) and Peggy Danziger are lovers, and their lovemaking is espied by vicious Mid Summers--whose anonymous diary entries scattered through the early story reveal him as a sickle, miffed by Jaret's presumed cold shoulder and determined to ""get her."" Get her he does, with a rape and beating in the woods, confident because she knows that if she tells who did it he will tell her secret. But Jaret isn't ashamed of her relationship, and despite the police chief's sexist bullying and Peggy's copping out (""If you do this, I'll never see you again""), she goes ahead and presses charges. Jaret has an unusually supportive family behind her, and in the end she has both her integrity and Peggy, who returns with love and embraces: ""Suddenly I realized how much I miss you, love you."" Those who consider YA novels according to the handling and breakthrough value of their messages will give this a high rating for depicting an unambiguous, freely accepted lesbian relationship, with a brutal rape to muster outrage, a moral battle bravely undertaken, and--except perhaps for the police chief--false stereotypes carefully avoided. (Both girls are pretty, had swell mothers, don't ""hate men,"" etc.) What's more, none of it creaks; Scoppettone is a master of smooth, soapy readability. With all that, it's probably too much to ask that the ""mature"" subject matter be matched with any depth of observation or genuine literary imagination.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1978
Publisher: Harper & Row