A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Zoe's mother is battling alcoholism and is in and out of rehab throughout the book. The story does a thoughtful job of showing how addiction upends a teen's life.
It is possible to reinvent yourself as a teenager. Gregor and Mia leave their outsider identities behind, Jake comes out to his friends and family, Whitney moves beyond simply being the popular girl, and Zoe sheds her L.A. persona to become a "normal" kid in a small town high school.
Positive Role Models
All five characters manage to steer a primarily positive course throughout the book, navigating around friends making bad choices, setting goals and working toward them, making wise choices when forming new friendships.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Mostly kissing (same- and opposite-sex) and some "inside the underwear" touching and breast fondling. Gregor's father talks to him about condoms, a blow job is referred to but not described, and there's one very brief, non-graphic sex scene.
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Occasional use of "boner," "screw you," and "f--k" and its variants.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
A few instances of teen beer drinking and marijuana smoking and one experiment with Jell-O shots. Zoe's mother's alcoholism is a major thread through the book.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Infinite iIn Between by Printz Honor author Carolyn Mackler (The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things) follows five teens (two outsiders, a popular girl, a boy exploring his sexuality, and the daughter of a movie star) from their first meeting at freshman orientation through to their high school graduation. For some, their paths will cross again in fleeting ways; for others, their lives will become bound together. Using alternating narratives of the five teens, Mackler creates deftly written, relatable characters, and compelling story lines that should keep the reader's interest through the book's hefty 480 pages. There's occasional strong language including "f--k," same- and opposite-sex kissing, one brief, non-graphic sex scene, some teen drinking and pot smoking, and a mother's battle with alcoholism.
Is It Any Good?
This is a compulsively readable story of five teens who meet by chance and then find their lives intersecting in unexpected and surprising ways over the four years of high school. Unlike books in which sex and drugs play a leading role, author Carolyn Mackler has chosen a quieter path for her characters, concentrating instead on the challenges so many teens face: self-discovery, unrequited love, friends who prove not to be friends, family conflicts, and the pressures of applying to college.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.