Thursday, July 6, 2017

Be True to Me by Adele Griffin-- 70's, Summery, and UNFORGIVING!

Be True To Me

Jean spends every summer at Sunken Haven being ignored for her more glamorous and mature sister, Daphne.  But when Daphne takes off for Europe for the summer, Jean suddenly finds herself hoping for a summer to remember.

Fritz comes from Louisiana to Fire Island every summer to work and visit with an old friend.  Things come easy to Fritz, and when she meets newcomer Gil, sparks fly.

Gil is new to the island and wants to fit in.  He finds himself caught between Jean-- the girl who can help him blend in to his new posh life-style, and Fritz-- the girl-next-door type who he feels kindred spirits with.

As summer goes on, tension builds-- and this summer is going to be anything but forgettable.

YES!!!  I was so excited for this book because-- 70's, and summer, and ADELE GRIFFIN.  I know Ms. Griffin doesn't make most people's lists of fave authors, but she's super high on mine.  You wanna know why??  It's because her books fucking GO FOR IT.  They aren't perfect, and things don't always go the way I want them to go.  The characters are HARSH.  But I love the fact that it's so completely different with a unique writing style.

It's the summer of 1976-- the bicentennial.  Man, it made me wish I was alive to celebrate America's 200th year.  I'll bet is was a great party.  Anyway, the setting and the era was complete perfection.  I loved the 70's fashions and slang.  I loved the way summer came through this book so hard I could almost smell the sunshine and sunscreen.

Characters: As I started reading it, I really took Jean's side.  It's about 2 girls with nothing in common except that they both spend summers in a town on Fire Island.  I feel like Fritz (the other girl), is the one that most people will gravitate towards-- she's definitely more likable.... but you know me.  I have to be a rebel and like the one I'm probably not supposed to.  The thing is, Jean was flawed and had all the resources and advantages, but at the same time she had an inner pain that I could relate to.  She goes through a big character arc, deals with heartbreak, but she's the type who will always land on her feet eventually.  She's the type that I root for.

Now we get to the end.  Holy smokes.  The ending gives this book an edge that honestly, I think it needed.  Up until then it was just about a love-triangle-- and those can get annoying.  About 3/4ths of the way through things started getting INTENSE and I could not stop reading.  I was up super late because I just HAD to know.  Don't you love when that happens??

OVERALL: OMG YES!!!  It's the perfect summer book--- plus it's the 70's!!!  How many 70's YA books are there being published?  It's addicting, cool, edgy, and about so much more than a love-triangle.

Date Published: 6/13/2017
How I got this book: Thanks to Algonquin for providing me a copy to read and honestly review
Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers

Add it to your To-Read List!!

My Rating: 5/5

Character: Jean Custis
Book: To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han

  • Because Jean and Lara Jean have older sisters who overshadow them in common.

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  1. I am totally team Jean! I always end up cheering for the wrong person, the underdog, or the "bad" choice.

    1. I'm always on the "wrong" side, but oh well. Team Jean all the way!!

  2. Oh this sounds like so much fun! I will have to check it out for my upcoming vacation!

    1. Yes!! It's a perfect vacation book-- it has such a summery vibe.

  3. I'm not familiar with this author, but omg, I need to read this. Your first paragraph has me so exited to read an Adele book!

  4. Ooh 70's and summer! You don't see too many (any?) of those! Love the sound of it. 70's rock music too- it was different but kinda awesome. :)

    I think I'll need to get this, it might not be my usual kind of read but the setting and the sound of it from your review- now I want to see how it ends lol.

  5. I'm reading this right now! Adele Griffin (along with Jodi Lynn Anderson and Sarah Mlynowski) will be at the bookstore I work at Thursday night for a YA panel I'm moderating- which makes me equal parts excited and nervous. I read The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone and I'm halfway through Be True To Me, which I'm loving.

  6. You had me at 70s and summer. This sounds so good! I'm glad you enjoyed it. :D