Her family’s move to the wrong side of the tracks feels like a devastating fall from grace for Ivy.
Her parents hid their financial struggles until the announcement that they are selling everything, including Ivy’s beloved piano, and moving to the poor side of town. Ivy goes to great lengths to hide this change from her rich friends. The strain is enormous, as Ivy, her parents, and her twin siblings are forced to rely on the charity of food banks. Additionally, she finds it loathsome that the guy next door, Lennie, with tattoos and a bad reputation, is making overtures of friendship. Enter the gorgeous new boy in high school, James. In a betrayal of Ivy’s smitten best friend, they strike up a secret friendship, leaving special notes to each other contained within their favorite books. Of course, nothing is quite as it seems. Ivy must face her shallowness and apparent lack of ability to do simple deductive reasoning, as she continues to confuse which potential love interest is doing what. Were it not for Ivy’s emotionally complex relationship with her little brother, who has a seizure disorder, this would languish as a nice but typical romance in which the girl must choose between two, very disparate knights in shining armor.
This teen-love not-quite-trifle demonstrates that between the lines resides truth about perception, others, and most importantly oneself. (Romance. 14-17)