Sunday, May 20, 2012

WHAT WE'RE READING: Realistic (?) Fiction

Getting Over Garrett Delaney
by Abby McDonald
319 pages (pretty large type, though)
Realistic fiction--think Joan Bauer, Deb Caletti, Sarah Dessen
Stand-alone (not series)
Ages 13 and up?
Reviewed by: Melliott

S U M M A R Y :
Seventeen-year-old Sadie has been in unrequited love with her best friend, Garrett Delaney, for two years now. Two years of being best buds, sharing movies, books, and jokes, while Garrett dated Julie, then Beth, and Sadie mooned over Garrett, waiting for her chance. She thinks that chance will come this summer--they are both planning to go away together for six weeks to writer's camp--but when Garrett is accepted and Sadie isn't, Sadie is faced with a summer of unsatisfying phone calls and texts. She gets a job as a barista at the local coffee hangout, and after a Garrett-inspired meltdown, her co-workers stage an intervention, helping her to formulate a sort of 12-step plan to get over her obsession and reinvent herself, while retaining Garrett's friendship. But what will happen when Garrett returns?

R E V I E W :
I really enjoyed this book! A story like this could all too easily become too precious, or too cliched, but McDonald stayed well away from those pitfalls and managed to make a rather familiar story fresh and interesting. It has some great observations about relationships and how we change ourselves to meet the other person's expectations and sometimes never stop to wonder how much of what we say and do is self-motivated and how much is a result of trying to be the perfect person for the object of our affection. Both the main characters and the "sidekicks" are written with depth and interest, and the author maintains a nice balance of making us care about their peripheral issues while still keeping our focus directed at her protagonist.

I liked the cover pretty well, although there are several other ways I can think of that they could have gone with the art. I would give this book a four out of five!

You can find this book on the NEW BOOK shelves at the Central and Buena Vista libraries.

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