[alert variation=”alert-info”]Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Formats: Paperback, Kindle, eBook Audible, Audio Book
Purchase: Powell’s | Amazon | IndieBound | Barnes & Noble | iBooks[/alert]

Similar to the characters in The Grown Ups, this novel really goes nowhere. From high school to adulthood, this novel spans friends as their lives tangle, untangle and tangle again. Sam loves Suzie but Suzie’s parents break up and they move away. Suzie shows Sam the ultimate betrayal as Suzie’s family drives away. Then Sam’s mom moves out and to Vermont and he watches his father live his meager life. Michael, Sam’s brother, appears to be the antithesis of both Sam and his father, focused on school and becoming a doctor. Suzie and Bella are best friends and reunite once Suzie and Michael begin to date and then plan their wedding. Michael and Suzie appear to have a storybook life, but they cannot escape pain either. Sam’s dad finally remarries but then starts to battle dementia.

Each character experiences tragedy and the pain of trying to be grown up and figure out their lives. Robin Antalek writes matter-of-factly but the storyline seems forced. The events surrounding each character feel very high school-ish in the quality of drama and this reviewer was never able to grasp on to the characters enough to really care what happened to each of them.

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