cover image The Story of Us

The Story of Us

Deb Caletti. Simon Pulse, $16.99 (400p) ISBN 978-1-4424-2346-6

Eighteen-year-old Cricket’s mother has left a trail of broken relationships behind her, but this time she’s found a “good guy.” Cricket, however, fears that her mother won’t go through with her marriage plans. Indeed, the week leading up to the wedding, as family and friends arrive at a large coastal inn, is fraught with spoiled soon-to-be stepsisters, fighting dogs, and the sudden divorce of the groom’s parents. And Cricket has her own romantic problem: she and her long-term boyfriend, Janssen, are “taking a break” so she can sort out what she really wants (something that grows murkier when she meets the innkeepers’ son). Some readers may tire of offbeat secondary characters and the accelerating chaos, but they will savor Cricket’s thoughtful and poetic observations about love—her letters to Janssen, in which she writes about her dog, Jupiter, and what dogs reveal about love, are quite moving (“Their goodness is goodness, and their love is love... and nothing you do seems to change that”). Caletti’s (Stay) ninth novel is a rewarding story of a girl’s struggle to live and love in a world of constant change. Ages 12–up. (Apr.)