||AUTHOR: Jennifer E. Smith
PUBLISHER: Poppy/ Little Brown
PUBLICATION DATE: Jan. 2, 2012
SOURCE: my library
GENRE: romance/realistic fiction
GIVE IT TO: MS, HS girls; some boys may enjoy it as well
SUMMARY: When Hadley misses her flight to London by a mere four minutes, she knows it may be impossible to make it in time for her father’s wedding to “that British woman” Charlotte. But things start looking up when Hadley meets a cute boy at the airport and ends up sitting next to him on the plane.
REVIEW: This is more of a 3.5 star book for me. I enjoyed it well enough and thought it was cute, but I doubt I’ll remember much about it by next week. Hadley’s character is understandably furious with her father, who abruptly left Hadley and her mother after falling for another woman during a 4-month professorship at Oxford.
I have absolutely no sympathy for Hadley’s father, whom Hadley has not seen in the two years since he left. Despite his pleas to Hadley to come visit him in London, Hadley does not want to do that, and I do not blame her one bit. Her father is the adult and the one who moved in the first place; if he was really that desperate to see his daughter, he would have traveled to visit her. So, please, don’t act all hurt when she is less-than-excited about your wedding. I am glad that she went to the wedding and learned to make the best of things, but that is what makes her the hero. It really was the right thing to do, even if the whole situation was forced on her and she really didn’t want to do it.
Oliver is likeable as well, but I don’t feel his character is as developed as Hadley’s or even Hadley’s father’s character. Hadley’s mother is a ghost of a character who is portrayed as an involved mother, even though she never answers her phone while her minor daughter travels overseas (and alone) for the first time.
I would have loved to have seen this from alternating or multiple perspectives (Oliver and Hadley and maybe even Hadley’s parents).
THE BOTTOM LINE: An okay read for me, but I think lots of teens will identify with Hadley’s family situation and her feeling about her father’s nuptials.
STATUS IN MY LIBRARY: It’s brand-new in our library and just got checked out yesterday for the first time (other than my checkout). Content is just fine for middle school, and I recommend it for purchase in most MS and HS libraries.
- Overall: 3/5
- Creativity: 3/5
- Characters: 3/5
- Engrossing: 3/5
- Writing: 4/5
- Appeal to teens: 5/5
- Appropriate length to tell the story: 5/5
- Language: none
- Sexuality: mild; some kissing, all vertical
- Violence: none
- Drugs/Alcohol: mild–Oliver takes whiskey off steward’s serving cart (leaves money behind to pay for it)