A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
This may be a bit fluffy, but it IS reading. Teens who enjoy this book may want to check out some of the other picks on this page.
Amber and Cade are frightened of what the next day will bring, and they both take steps to try to help themselves get in the right frame of mind. Ultimately, they find solace in friendship and family, and appreciate that life is a mix of good and bad -- and that you can’t predict where it will take you.
Positive Role Models
Amber’s parents provide loving support for their daughter in what is a trying time for them too. In return, she’s an appreciative and loving daughter. Amber is tempted to run away from her problems, but she and Cade help each other confront their fears. They demonstrate great empathy for their families.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Nothing aside from some mild kissing. The teen protagonists spend a night cuddled together, but there's no suggestion of sex.
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Curse words are used occasionally and include "damn," "son-of-a-bitch," "hell," "s--t," and "a--hole."
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Products & Purchases
Specific movies and musicians, in particular, are used to show two teens bonding.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
There is no actual drinking, but a 15-year-old notes at one point that "me and alcohol don't mix."
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that the teen characters in this story are completely on their own for 24 hours or so, trying to find some peace before each faces an eventful, life-changing day. Amber leaves without her parents’ knowledge, though she does let them know what she’s up to; on the whole, she and Cade behave responsibly and maturely. In the end, there is a positive message about finding solace in friendship and family, and appreciating that life is an unpredictable mix of good and bad.
Is It Any Good?
This is a trifling pleasure, but a pleasure nonetheless. The plot evokes soap operas and made-for-TV movies, and the central conflict in Amber’s life is revealed slowly, through verse and a series of letters between her and her family. Pervasive pop culture references -- to music, movies, and candy -- substitute for depth and serve as shorthand as Amber and Cade build their relationship. Even so, readers will likely be drawn in, and they will find Amber’s voice authentic. Teens will appreciate her ability to focus on what she needs to do to face an uncertain future.
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.
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