Summary (from Goodreads):
“Printz Honor author Carolyn Mackler returns with this striking new novel that chronicles the lives of five teenagers through the thrills, heartbreaks, and joys of their four years in high school.
Zoe, Jake, Mia, Gregor, and Whitney meet at freshman orientation. At the end of that first day, they make a promise to reunite after graduation. So much can happen in those in-between years….
Zoe feels like she will live forever in her famous mother’s shadow. Jake struggles to find the right connections in friendship and in love. Mia keeps trying on new identities, looking for one that actually fits. Gregor thought he wanted to be more than just a band geek. And Whitney seems to have it all, until it’s all falling apart around her.
Echoing aspects of John Hughes’s The Breakfast Club, Carolyn Mackler skillfully brings the stories of these five disparate teens together to create a distinct and cohesive whole—a novel about how we can all affect one another’s lives in the most unexpected and amazing ways.”
This is a fast, fun read. Even though it’s over 450 pages, I was able to read it in an afternoon (short chapters; characters I liked) and I wish it had been longer. (Sequel with them in college, maybe?)
I think the comparison to The Breakfast Club is pretty apt; these characters really have nothing in common (although, like in The Breakfast Club, some are more popular than others but you still wouldn’t expect to see them spending time together).
I think it’s so easy to relate to everyone’s struggle to define who they want to be, and to try and figure out how to get there from where they currently are.