The Unwritten Rule

Elizabeth Scott, Simon Pulse, $16.99 (224p) ISBN 978-1-4169-7891-6
In a smart, well-observed story about the intricacies of teenage love and friendship, 17-year-old Sarah has always been in the shadow of her beautiful best friend, Brianna. And Brianna makes sure she stays there with such comments as, "You're tiny and quiet, so guys never notice you. It's because they're stupid and only think about looks and stuff, of course, but still." After Brianna swoops in and snags Sarah's longtime crush, Ryan, at an end-of-summer party, Sarah can't help but break the titular unwritten rule: "I'm that girl. The one who likes her best friend's boyfriend. In the world of friendship, I'm awful." Brianna relies on Sarah's help to cope with her parents, so Sarah does all she can to quash her feelings, but she can't help kissing Ryan, who slowly reveals his true feelings. The story line is not new, but Scott (Something, Maybe) brings her usual sharp dialogue and fully formed characters to the script (especially earnest, conflicted Sarah, but also secondary characters such as Sarah's mother, who participates in competitive cook-offs), making it feel fresh. Ages 14–up. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 05/10/2010
Release date: 03/01/2010
Paperback - 210 pages - 978-1-4169-7892-3
Open Ebook - 224 pages - 978-1-4424-1387-0
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