A Young Adult Contemporary novel by Kelli Kretzschmar. I read this straight through in one sitting as the emotions were riveting (well, as straight through as a mother of a nursing Toddler and always-jumping-Preschooler can). It is easy to see that the author took her Psychology degree seriously...almost all of the characters' emotions are so well fleshed out.
We get to know the characters...particularly Kendra and her two future potential love interests, cousins Sebastian and Nick Veneto. We see below the surface prettiness of largely affluent California living that nothing in Kendra's life is perfect (especially her relationship with her mother). Then the unspeakable happens...a betrayal as someone she thought was a good friend tries to sexually harm Kendra. Kendra finds herself trapped in a cycle of attempting to heal and facing further conflicts.
A tale of friendship and loyalty...choices, mistakes and consequences. Despite the tragic events depicted, there is so much hope and growth...one might even say that most of the teens grow to become young adults by the end of the book.
My rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars and I look forward to Book 2
Format: Paperback, Paperback,406 pages. Kindle edition.
Advice: Most readers should leave extra reading time for processing emotions and reactions. Of course, there are some pages where those with past sexual trauma may experience triggers. It is obvious that the author tries to handle the depiction of sexual violence with care but proceed with caution.
Nice feature: A Spotify playlist at the end of the book. It includes a song from the Foo Fighters new "Sonic Highways" album. :-)