"17-year-old Gwen Castle is a working-class girl determined to escape her small island town, but when rich-kid Cass Somers, with whom she has a complicated romantic history, shows up, she's forced to reassess her feelings about her loving, complex family, her lifelong best friends, her wealthy employer, the place she lives, and the boy she can't admit she loves"--
Seventeen-year-old Gwen is a working-class girl determined to escape her small island town, but when rich-kid Cass shows up, she's forced to reassess her feelings about her loving, complex family. The plot contains mild profanity and sexual references.
- ISBN13 9780803739093
- Publish Date 15 April 2014
- Publish Status Out of Stock
- Publish Country US
- Publisher Penguin Putnam Inc
- Imprint Dial Books for Young Readers,US
- Format Hardcover
- Pages 409
- Language English
Maybe I stop talking because I don’t know what to say. Or maybe I stop because I finally get that sometimes we hold on to something—a person, a resentment, a regret, an idea of who we are—because we don’t know what to reach for next. That what we’ve done before is what we have to do again. That there are only re-dos and no do-overs. And maybe . . . maybe I know better than that.
Helping Gwen redefine herself is, of course, love interest Cass. The book somewhat overdoes the romance factor in the first several chapters, where Gwen seemingly cannot go even two pages without running into Cass again, but this does make sure the pace of the novel is going headlong from the start. Also, Gwen and Cass’s relationship is hardly smooth-sailing. Cass is one of the swim team boys Gwen had a hook-up with in the past, and she has no idea what that makes their relationship now. Cass, however, has a crystal-clear idea of what he would like their relationship to be, and many readers are sure to fall for Cass even as Gwen does.
In addition to romance, however, Fitzpatrick does family well. Readers who fell in love with the younger siblings in My Life Next Door will find much to adore in Gwen’s younger brother Emory. Emory has a mental disability the doctors cannot quite define, leaving Gwen to feel fiercely protective of him. Yet Emory has nothing if not a mind of his own. He is sometimes quirky and sometimes cranky, but he always seems able to find the good in the world and make others see it, too. The family is rounded out by Gwen’s parents (divorced), her cousin Nico, and her grandfather. The dynamics are vastly different from those in My Life Next Door, but demonstrate that Fitzpatrick does have the skills to write about lives on both sides of the bridge—the lives of the rich, and the lives of those who work for the rich.
What I Thought Was True is a thoughtful book. Not always optimistic and not always upbeat, it is not necessarily the fun beach read one might expect it to be from the cover. However, the book tackles tough high school subjects and the complexity of life and suggests that, just maybe, things can be okay after all. Recommended for fans of contemporary romance.