It was an intense read- I had to take a few hours to process. It deals with some tough topics- rape, death, social cliques, and bullying are just a few of the big issues. The book flap summary:
The sheriff's son, Kellan Turner, is not the golden boy everyone thinks he is, and Romy Grey knows that for a fact. Because no one wants to believe a girl from the wrong side of town, the truth about him has cost her everything-friends, family, and her community. Branded a liar and bullied relentlessly by a group of kids she used to hang out with, Romy's only refuge is the diner where she works outside of town. No one knows her name or her past there; she can finally be anonymous. But when a girl with ties to both Romy and Kellan goes missing after a party, and news of him assaulting another girl in a town close by gets out, Romy must decide whether she wants to fight or carry the burden of knowing more girls could get hurt if she doesn't speak up. Nobody believed her the first time-and they certainly won't now-but the cost of her silence might be more than she can bear.
made the book sound like it would be about the aftermath of Romy Grey’s rape, the disappearance a classmate and the sexual assault of another girl- all related to Kellan Turner, the sheriff’s son. I thought the three crimes would show the town what a monster he really is- the multiple assaults, the disappearance- all would be linked back to him with evidence and witnesses.
If that is what you thought the book is/was going to be, then you’re in for disappointment/shock/frustration because that is not what it was at all. Nope. Not one bit.
Kellan doesn’t even make an appearance in the book- NOT ONCE. He’s mentioned three times by name and hinted at quite a few more times but the reader is never introduced to him outright. He is in no way connected to the disappearance of Romy’s classmate and the second sexual assault is mentioned twice, both in passing. Nothing is ever done about Romy’s rape- she reports it but the town turns against her because Kellan is the golden boy and can do no wrong. Everyone at school hates her because they think Kellan moved away because of her accusation. She is shunned and bullied by the student body- at one point the “popular girls” steal her underwear and put them on the school mascot. They spread rumors around that Romy was “asking for it” because she had a crush at Kellan. NO ONE EVER ASKS TO BE RAPED. EVER. High school was pure hell for Romy because of something that she had no control over. I ended up despising the town, and that was the point of the story, but it also shows how easy it is to jump to a bandwagon based on a single side of the story (not that I’m saying you should EVER be supporting the rapist) but when you can’t comprehend someone's actions- it is easy to just ignore the problem and pretend it didn’t happen.
I felt the book flap was very misleading- even now, having read the novel- I don’t think it describes what happens accurately. 80% of the book focuses on the missing classmate (who used to be Romy’s best friend but turned against her after Romy reported the rape) and what happened to her- though it turns out she died trying to protect Romy from a second rape by a different boy.
If I had been correctly informed of what this book was about, I think I would’ve enjoyed it more but because I was expecting something different- I felt disheartened (and kinda lied to).
Overall: 3/5 - If I got the story I was expecting, I would’ve given it 4/5 - I really enjoyed Summers’ writing style and the issues NEED to be tackled- especially for young adults.
SRP Goal: 5/20