Rating: 2.75/5 Stars (Yep, it's really hard for me to give just a two or a three-and this one fell in between for me-sorry my ratings are so wacky!)
Release Date: 1/7/2010
About the Book: On Labor Day, Julia was killed in a car accident. People at school mourn Julia's loss, but Colt's mourning is much deeper-and a secret. For the past year, he and Julia have been sharing a secret relationship-meeting after dark and not telling anyone about it. When Colt discovers a journal kept by Julia which contains letters addressed to him, he can't seem to let go.
GreenBeanTeenQueen Says: I'm not really sure what to say about this one. It was OK-I didn't think it was spectacular, but I didn't dislike it either. I did think the premise was more engaging than the book itself.
Honestly, I found Colt to be an annoying character-I never really felt sympathy for him. I know I was supposed to care about his loss and his mourning for Julia, but I never did. And I wished Julia's letters would have been more interesting-she felt very bland and it was hard for me to see why Colt liked her in the first place-other than the fact they were having sex. Their relationship never seemed that interesting or exciting. Even after Julia's death, Colt is presented with chances to move on, but he never really does.
I also felt there was too much trying to happen in the plot. There's the storyline about Colt and Julia, but any mystery there was lacking, so it fell a little flat for me. Then there's a storyline about the rich kids (Julia's crowd) and the poor kids (Colt's crowd). Add in some new romance possibilities for Colt, and a brother who is off to college and learning about his sexuality and it felt like there was too much going on.
The description on Amazon describes it as Romeo and Juliet mixed with The Outsiders and I'll admit the book did remind me of The Outsiders with a dash of romance while I was reading it. Granted, it's been years since I've read that book, so the comparison may not hold true. But I'm planning on recommending this one to my teens who come in looking for books by S.E. Hinton and I think they'll enjoy it.
The book was interesting enough to keep me reading and Colt's revelation at the end was shocking, but it just came a little too late to truly work for me. I do think Ms. Hubbard is a talented author and I hope she grows from here because I could see her books getting better and better. Plus, I think my teens who read this one will be clamoring for more.
Reviewed from ARC provided by the publisher