cover image Maybe I Will

Maybe I Will

Laurie Gray. Luminis (Midpoint Trade, dist.), $26.95 (200p) ISBN 978-1-935462-70-5

Sandy has two close friends, Callie and Troy; immediate plans to audition for the lead in the high school musical, Peter Pan; and dreams that include Juilliard, Hollywood, and Broadway. But after Sandy is sexually assaulted by Callie’s boyfriend, Sandy’s life unravels. Sandy starts to steal and abuse alcohol, lies to everyone about what happened, and becomes isolated. Sandy’s supportive and concerned parents try to help, but seeing a “psycho therapist” is the last thing Sandy wants. Sandy’s gender is never revealed to readers, a decision intended to make the teenager’s experience more universal, but which instead keeps the character at a distance, despite Sandy also being the narrator. A new friend, Shanika, introduces Sandy to tae kwon do, which helps, but true recovery is impossible until Sandy faces the incident head-on. Gray (Summer Sanctuary) draws from her professional experience with teens in this fast-moving and emotional story. While readers may empathize with Sandy’s pain and recognize the value in seeking counsel from family and professionals alike, wooden dialogue and the characters’ overall artificiality keep the book from realizing its full potential. Ages 13–18. (Mar.)