Age Appropriate For: 16 and up (for under aged smoking, drinking and reverences to immoral guy-girl relationship)
Best for Ages: 16 to 25
Book Description: Selena's life isn't turning out to be the fairy tale she imagined as a kid. That hope seemed to vanish long ago when her dad kicked her and her mom out of the house. This summer might finally hold the chance of a new beginning for Selena ... but having to live with her snobby cousin in Lake Lure, NC while waiting for her mom to get out of rehab wasn't how Selena was planning on spending her summer. She soon begins to wonder why she committed to give up her "bad habits" for this. Things don't seem too bad, though. Especially when Selena gains the attention of the cute neighbor next door. But when her best friend back home in Brooklyn desperately needs her, a secret that's been hidden from Selena for years is revealed, and when she becomes a target for one of her cousin's nasty pranks, she finds herself having to face the scars from her past and the memories that come along with them. Will she follow her mom's example in running away, or trust that God still has a fairy tale life written just for her?
Powerful. That is the first word that comes to mind to describe this story. Selena captures your emotions and takes you on a roller-coaster ride that ends with a deep, satisfying ending.
I don't normally read books about troubled teens. They normally feel so set up and fake, or so crude I blush my way through. This book felt realistic and dealt with some very hard issues in a very tactful way. Selena has many issues that have grown out of a troubled past. I found myself understanding why she did what she did.
The story itself really kept me turning pages. I read most of it in one day. Her story has so many ups and downs. Tessa Hall really kept me guessing where she was taking the story. I would get so excited as Selena started making the right choices, only to see her have an understandable set back.
The faith element of the book was so good. In fact, it was one of the most powerful I have read in a long time. I saw myself in many of the spiritual struggled Selena has, even though I have had mine for different reasons. It was uplifting and soothing for my spirit to read this book and be reminded I am not alone in my struggles.
There were some moments I was uncomfortable, I admit. However, unlike many books about troubled teens, I felt like these situations were not added to the story in order to make me gasp or blush, but had true purpose. I thought Tessa did a great job of address some tough situations with tact and realism at the same time.
I highly recommend this books for older teens and young adults who want realistic stories that are powerful and faith building.
I received this book from the author in exchange for my honest review. I was under no obligation to write a positive review. The opinions in this review are entirely my own.