|Spoken Word CD||CD PARK, JESSICA||Audiovisual Collection|
He was tall, at least six feet, with dirty blond hair that hung over his eyes. His T-shirt read Nietzsche Is My Homeboy.So, that was Matt. Who Julie Seagles likes. A lot. But there is also Finn. Who she flat out loves.Complicated? Awkward? Completely.But really, how was this freshly-minted Boston transplant and newbie college freshman supposed to know that she would end up living with the family of an old friend of her mother's? This was all supposed to be temporary. Julie wasn't supposed to be important to the Watkins family, or to fall in love with one of the brothers. Especially the one she's never quite met. But what does that really matter? Finn gets her, like no one ever has before. They have connection. But here's the thing about love, in all its twisty, bumpy permutations - it always throws you a few curves. And no one ever escapes unscathed.
Something is seriously off in the Watkins home. And Julie Seagle, college freshman and the newest resident of this Boston house, is determined to get to the bottom of it. When Julie's off campus housing falls through, her mother's old college roommate, Erin Watkins, invites her to move in. Not until she forces a buried secret to the surface, eliciting a dramatic confrontation that threatens to tear the fragile Watkins family apart, does she get her answer.
School Library Journal Review
Gr 11 Up-In Park's tale (Amazon Children's Pub., 2012) of grief and healing, Julie Seagle moves in with the eccentric Watkins family, whose disturbing idiosyncrasies seemingly center on perpetually globetrotting oldest brother, Finn. Nowhere is this more manifest than in teenage Celeste, who is never without a life-sized cardboard representation of her absent brother. Then there's pretentious Matt, who antagonizes Julie at every opportunity. Julie begins a flirty online relationship with Finn and falls hard. But when a lie involving a gift Finn sent to Celeste from "abroad" is exposed, Julie becomes suspicious and uncovers several more discrepancies in her crush's stories. Julie learns that Finn is dead and everyone's odd behaviors stem from a morbid failure to cope with the loss. The boy she'd been communicating with online was Matt masquerading as his brothe. Julie is angry, but eventually forgives this deception when she realizes she's in love with Matt. Despite an inspired concept, the story's execution falls flat. Characters are difficult to relate to, romance lacks chemistry, and the ending is overly cliched. Listeners will likely guess the big plot twist early on and spend the remainder of the story wondering why Julie is so oblivious to the obvious. Mature situations make this a poor choice for younger audiences. Julia Whelan's clipped dictation seems far too formal for the genre. Skip this and consider Twenty Boy Summer (Little, Brown, 2010) by Sarah Ockler which deals with many of the same issues.-Alissa Bach, Oxford Public Library, MI (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.