The second novel in Colasanti’s series about the continuing adventures of three girls spending the summer before college in the Big Apple is aptly named, since there is a clear difference in tone from the first book.
Readers follow the stories of poor, thrifty Rosanna; upbeat, native New Yorker Sadie; and wealthy, spoiled Darcy through experiences, mostly boy-related, that challenge their emotional well-being and cause them to behave in ways that contradict their stereotypes. Rosanna continues to be treated to all the perks of an affluent lifestyle by rich boy D, but her past life intrudes in the form of a blackmail attempt from someone in the children’s day camp where she is working. Through her concern for an at-risk child in the camp, Rosanna discovers how to exorcise her own sad history. Rich girl Darcy’s past also intrudes when ex-boyfriend Logan shows up and tests her resilience in many ways. Sadie’s happy-go-lucky disposition is tested when her soul mate Austin turns out to have deceived her. The good cheer that she lovingly distributes isn’t enough to placate her grown-up dilemma. Sadie’s love for the city of her birth holds the girls (all presumably white) together through multiple dramas. While the girls’ back stories are complicated enough to lend texture, the relentless breeziness of the alternating first-person present-tense narrations (even Sadie’s) keeps the book from feeling anything other than superficial.
Readers who enjoyed City Love (2015) will appreciate the contemporary urban vibe and the promise of more teen adventures to come. (Fiction. 14-18)