Becca Jones’s father has been convicted of a Bernie Madoff–like financial scheme, and after he goes to jail, Becca and her mother flee from Georgia to small-town Ohio, hoping for an anonymous fresh start. Three years later, Becca is a senior in high school with plenty of friends, straight As, and college dreams. Becca’s mother is terrified that someone will discover their secret, but when Becca learns about a mysterious scholarship—a full ride for one student at her high school—she’s determined to get it. The presence of Becca’s father, although he’s absent from her day-to-day existence, is strongly felt through Becca’s questions about his crimes and lies, as well as the fact that she still loves him. Haddix (Game Changer) takes up a relevant topic for teens—the process of applying for college—and brings it to a new level of anxiety. The disastrous turns that Becca’s senior year takes will rivet readers and perhaps even alleviate some stress about their own (presumably scandal-free) application processes. Ages 12–up. Agent: Tracey Adams, Adams Literary. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 10/14/2013 Release date: 11/12/2013 Genre: Children's
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