In this story, a girl called Linnea is struggling to adjust to new family life after her mother remarried. She gets on okay with her stepfather and her half-brother, but not her stepsister (her stepfather’s daughter from his previous marriage). The stepsister is mean and picks on her, but one day there is a shooting at the school in which the stepsister and her friend was killed. Linnea survived and she finds it difficult to overcome the events of that day, on top of that her stepfather “blames” her for surviving. Her mother sends her away to her father’s, because she doesn’t know what to do with Linnea… in essence, choosing her husband over her own daughter. Linnea’s dad, called Art, doesn’t know what to do with her either. He finds it hard to establish a relationship with her, and she in turn does not listen to him, because who is he to tell her what to do when he has been absent in her life until now?
She makes friends with a boy called Connor who in turn struggles with his father Sean, who after an accident was left crippled. He finds it difficult to walk, and develops an addiction to pain killers. He got into an accident after he met a lady online and went on a date with her. He drove home with her, but she wrecked the (stolen) car and then disappeared. Connor had to leave school and is now working for a rich old lady, Mrs Foster, to care for his dad.
Christie is Art’s next door neighbour and she is a nurse, who sometimes does homecare for older patients, one of them being Mrs Foster. Mrs Foster one day request her to help out with a new charity fund that she is starting called “The Humanity Project”, where she wants to pay people to be good!
As you can tell, this book covers a range of topics from teen anger, lies, bad parenting, drug addiction, bad decisions, resentment and neglect. This book was an easy read for me; however I found it difficult to connect with any of the characters. The one event that I found interesting and wanted to know more about is the school shooting. It was mentioned a lot in the book, but never what happened and how it happened until the end. Linnea acted out a lot, but it would have been nice to read more about her emotions, I felt I would have connected with the character more. All the characters in the book, even though their stories are separate, were connected in some way.
Have you read the book? If so, what did you think?