Emily doesn’t know why she froze. Or why Lucas did too. Afterward, she thought of different ways to rationalize it. But the truth is, they could have helped Belinda, and they didn’t. It’s a mistake they’ll both have to live with.
Sometimes doing nothing is the only way to cope.
Belinda doesn’t want to talk about what happened. Because when she does, it feels like it’s happening all over again.
Sometimes good can come from bad.
Emily and Lucas’s punishment is community service at a center for people with disabilities. People like Belinda. Soon they feel like maybe they’re starting to make a real difference. Like they would be able to do the right thing if they could do that night all over again. Like they could help not only those at the center but also each other.
But when Belinda returns to school, Emily and Lucas have to figure out if they can do anything that will actually help the one person they hurt most.
Kindle Edition, 384 pagesExpected publication: October 13th 2015 by HarperTeen
Genre: Young Adult/Contemporary
** I received an advanced readers copy from HarperTeen via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! **
This book says so much more than just the words that are found on the page. I work in the developmental services field and I can tell you that the struggles and challenges that were presented in this book are real and present for many people. The questions and conversations around relationships and jobs and school are ones that I see on a daily basis. McGovern does an incredible job at bringing awareness to challenges that some young people living with disabilities face through a fictional story. She also captures the ignorance of some (not all) teenagers when dealing with people that are different than them.
This story has the power to make people stop and think about their actions. I really think that young people can benefit from the message that this book so effectively and silently says. It has a heart and it not only brings awareness but it gives a voice to one person (Belinda) that shows just how those actions affect them.
I enjoyed every minute of this book. I didn't always understand Emily but that's OK. The message remained the same and the story still flowed. I'm not sure what young people will think of this book but I do hope that they read it. I'm also not sure if the fact that I work with people that are similar in personality to Belinda influenced my opinion on the book. There is a squeaky clean love story to go along with all of the heavier stuff that I'm sure the young readers will enjoy.
I look forward to more work from this author!
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