May 18, 2011
Author: Jo Ann Beard
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company (April 25, 2011)
The narrator of this story (If her name is ever mentioned I missed it.) and her best friend are the stars of this story. They're both 14 years old and together are learning how to navigate the path into adulthood. The lines they throw out are filled with humor and I had flashbacks of my own "adult-ness" at that age. ;)
This path is fraught with the usual teen-age angst filled issues such as boys, boobs, beer and being popular. But these girls are also dealing with darker, deeper issues - alcoholic parents, dysfunctional families and getting thrown into situations they shouldn't have to deal with nor are mentally prepared for.
The very first chapter is hysterical, the tone and wording are right on target when a crisis occurs that two young girls are made to deal with while babysitting. But it quickly turns dark in a way that is unexpected and disturbing. The book continues in this vein, alternating between emotions in quick, unexpected ways.
While there are frequent dark moments in this book, there's also a lot of hilarity. I do have so say that Jo Ann has a 14 year old girls thoughts and speech down perfectly.
I fully recommend it.