The summer of her dreams is about to get a reality check.
They said it couldn’t be done, but geeky sophomore Lauren Carlson transformed herself into a popular girl after moving to a new school halfway across the country. Amazing what losing her braces and going out for cheerleading will do. Only trouble is, the popular crowd is wearing on Lauren’s nerves and she can’t wait to return to summer camp where she’s valued for her brain instead of her handsprings. She misses her old friends and most of all, her long time camp-only boyfriend, Seth. This year she intends to upgrade their relationship to year-round status once she’s broken up with her new, jock boyfriend, Matt. He doesn’t even begin to know the real her, a girl fascinated by the night sky who dreams of discovering new planets and galaxies.
But Matt isn’t giving her up without a fight. As he makes his case to stay together, Lauren begins to realize his feelings run deeper than she ever would have guessed. What if the guy she thought she was meant to be with forever isn’t really The One? Returning to Camp Juniper Point was supposed to ground her uprooted life, but she’s more adrift than ever. Everything feels different and soon Lauren’s friends are turning on her and both guys question what she really wants. As summer tensions escalate, Lauren wonders if she’s changed more than she thought. Will her first big discovery be herself?
When I started reading this book I wasn’t crazy about Matt. I was looking forward to Lauren dumping him, but then I felt terrible for him when his home life went downhill and he clung to Lauren. We see a different side of him, and I saw him as a person for the first time. I really loved how his character evolved throughout the story.
As for Lauren, she’s almost like two people. Her former self and her new popular self are at odds, and Lauren isn’t sure she’s really either of the two. The story is really more about Lauren discovering who she is and what she wants out of life. I love that she recognized that and even tried to put her guy drama on the back burner for the sake of her own sanity and self-discovery. She earned big points for that one.
Seth is the guy every girl dreams about. He fell for Lauren before she became popular, back when she wore glasses and had braces. How can you not love that? And he remained sweet in this book, but he also took off for a while and even hung out with another girl. Still, I could tell his feelings for Lauren remained and he was just trying to find a way to hang on while she figured things out.
But boy drama and self-discovery weren’t Lauren’s only problems. Her friends were turning on her and she started to fit in with people she formerly disliked. Every aspect of Lauren’s life turned upside in this book and I really enjoyed “being there” while she figured it all out.