Monday, July 26, 2010

Book Review: "So Over It" by Stephanie Morrill

Senior year is over and Skylar Hoyt is ready to forgive and forget. Or at least forget. She wants a fresh start where people don't know about her partying past or her younger sister and her baby. A place where she won't run in to her ex-boyfriend every time she leaves the house. When she gets the chance to spend the summer in Hawaii with her grandparents, Skylar jumps at the chance to get out of town. But when her sister needs her, Skylar has to swallow her pride and come back home. Will she be strong enough to rise above the gossip and live the life God wants for her?

I've read a lot of young adult fiction, both Christian and general market. Even though I'm not a complete expert on the subject, I feel that I am one of the few readers who has read both kinds and can do a fair comparative. Sometimes general market YA has too much sex, language and drinking for Christian readers. Sometimes Christian YA is too clean and unrealistic for general market readers. I like reading books that have a balance between the two, where a Christian teen can read a YA book and still be able to relate to real life issues without sugarcoating.

Stephanie Morrill's series The Reinvention of Skylar Holt has manage to capture both worlds in a wonderfully written story. In the conclusion of the series, the reader finds Skylar still struggling with getting rid of her past and being able to move on with her life. A family vacation in Hawaii might do the trick..or it might not as her grandmother tries to fix her up with the cute next door neighbor boy. Skylar is still not completely over her ex boyfriend Chase so her feeling with new guy Justin become severely conflicted. Plus she is also having to deal with her teenage single mom sister and all the feeling and conflicts that go along with her situation.

Skylar has to tackle many things that a lot of Christian teens are carefully sheltered from. Since becoming a Christian, she's been able to stay away from her past life but it keeps following her around. There's a lot of boy drama in this book but it's handled realistically and that I feel a lot of girls will be able to relate to. Since this is the third book in the series, I HIGHLY recommend reading the other two books before delving into this one. While it could possibly be read as a stand alone, it is much better to read the other two books as you will be able to understand Skylar, her family, her situation and all the characters a lot better.

My only qualm about the book was that I felt it ended a little abruptly. I was a bit disappointed that the resolution to Skylar's problem (which had been plaguing her throughout the series) was only resolved literally at the very end of the book. I actually turned the page hoping to see more but alas the book was over. I just felt that a little bit more to the story might have helped.

Other than that, I thought this was a good conclusion to the series. Overall, I have really enjoyed these books as I felt that they have been a good portrayal of realistic teen life as well as introducing audiences to a multicultural family. I honestly feel that a lot of teens, whether Christian or not, will be able to relate to Skylar and her feelings, emotions, wants and needs. Morrill has done wonders writing this book and I will look forward to reading whatever she has coming up in the future.

So Over It by Stephanie Morrill is published by Revell (2010)

This review copy was provided by the publisher

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