Friday, April 6, 2018

ARC Review: The Summer of Broken Things by Margaret Peterson Haddix

The Summer of Broken Things
Author: Margaret Peterson Haddix
Publication: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (April 10, 2018)

Description: From New York Times bestselling author Margaret Peterson Haddix comes a haunting novel about friendship and what it really means to be a family in the face of lies and betrayal.

Fourteen-year-old Avery Armisted is athletic, rich, and pretty. Sixteen-year-old Kayla Butts is known as “butt-girl” at school. The two girls were friends as little kids, but that’s ancient history now. So it’s a huge surprise when Avery’s father offers to bring Kayla along on a summer trip to Spain. Avery is horrified that her father thinks he can choose her friends—and make her miss soccer camp. Kayla struggles just to imagine leaving the confines of her small town.

But in Spain, the two uncover a secret their families had hidden from both of them their entire lives. Maybe the girls can put aside their differences and work through it together. Or maybe the lies and betrayal will only push them—and their families—farther apart.

Margaret Peterson Haddix weaves together two completely separate lives in this engaging novel that explores what it really means to be a family—and what to do when it’s all falling apart.

My Thoughts: THE SUMMER OF BROKEN THINGS tells the story of a summer that really changes both of the main characters.

Avery Armisted is fourteen, rich, pretty, athletic and just a little bit spoiled. When her parents tell her that she is going with her father to Spain for the summer instead of to soccer camp with her friends, she is angry and disappointed. She is even more angry when her father tells her that they are bringing along Kayla Butts who is two years older and who was a friend when both girls were younger.

Kayla lives with her grandparents and her mother in a small town. She's not rich, not attractive, and is bullied at school by kids who call her Butt-girl. Her mother works in a nursing home and Kayla often tags along. Her best friends are the residents of the home. She is excited to be going to Spain and hopes that she and Avery can be friends again.

Once in Spain, the girls struggle to get along. Avery is so angry and Kayla finally stops trying to appease her. Avery gets even more angry and hurt when she learns that her parents are planning a divorce. Also, she learns a secret about her family that also involves Kayla which rocks the world for both girls.

They need to find a way to pull together and decide if they can be anything to each other. I liked the way Kayla developed self-confidence and self-assurance through the course of this story. I was a little less enthused about Avery who was more volatile in her emotional journey. Of course, Kayla has a much stronger family situation than Avery and more maturity.

This was an engaging story with intriguing characters.

Favorite Quote:
Avery also isn't baby-giraffe gawky and awkward anymore. She's dancer graceful, or maybe teen-model graceful. She moves like she knows people are watching her, like she thinks they should watch her. (I move mostly like I'm darting from shadow to shadow, hoping nobody notices me.)
I got this one from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

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