Halley has always followed in the wake of her best friend, Scarlett. But when Scarlett learns that her boyfriend has been killed in a motorcycle accident, and that she’s carrying his baby, she was devastated. For the first time ever, Scarlett really needs Halley. Their friendship may bend under the weight, but it’ll never break–because a true friendship is a promise you keep forever.
I’ve read all of Dessen’s books now, but this is a topic unlike any other. Yes, the story involves an overprotective mother “on the brink” of possibly losing her daughter to the bad crowd or a boy or whatever, but it’s not the usual work of Dessen. The main character doesn’t fall for the boy and live happily ever after. There’s actual tragedy that hinders main characters Halley and Scarlett – and it’s not just the boyfriend dying. There’s triumphs and struggles of normal teenage girls with a hint of teen pregnancy, but more importantly, this is a story of friendship and the lengths you go to for the friends that are more like family.
In all honesty the relationship and chemistry between Halley and Scarlett is much like mine and my best friend, Kendall’s, weird friendship/Big and Little relationship. According to Kendall, we’re future domestic partners because “we’re strong, independent women, that don’t need no man,” but in reality, we’re probably going to marry men someday in the future and go through the same things as Halley and Scarlett, when one of us starts a family in like ten years. We’ll sit there reading all the books and go to all the classes together, etc., etc. These types of friendships are the ones that last a lifetime. Granted, I didn’t meet my best friend until college, but I can’t imagine my life without her, just like Halley can’t imagine her life without Scarlett.
Despite the tragedies within the story itself, I couldn’t help but feel blissful as I read the story, not just because of how the friendship reminded me of my relationship with my best friend, but also because the relationships in the story were genuine (well…most of them were). Like 98% of the characters were genuine people, they felt so realistic and easily relatable, that I couldn’t help but to be blissful as I continued reading their story.
One thing I notice in Sarah Dessen novels is the returning of places and character cameos. This novel was based in the same town as That Summer, Lakeview with guest appearances of the Lakeview Mall and mention of Topper Lake. There will be plenty more cameos and mentions of people, places, and things as I continue my #SarahDessenMarathon. Next up on the reading list is, Keeping the Moon by Sarah Dessen. Happy reading lovelies!