By Jessi Kirby
Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2013
Audience: All Teens
Seventeen-year-old Parker Frost has never taken the road less traveled. Valedictorian and quintessential good girl, she’s about to graduate high school without ever having kissed her crush or broken the rules. So when fate drops a clue in her lap—one that might be the key to unraveling a town mystery—she decides to take a chance.
Julianna Farnetti and Shane Cruz are remembered as the golden couple of Summit Lakes High—perfect in every way, meant to be together forever. But Julianna’s journal tells a different story—one of doubts about Shane and a forbidden romance with an older, artistic guy. These are the secrets that were swept away with her the night that Shane’s jeep plunged into an icy river, leaving behind a grieving town and no bodies to bury.
Reading Julianna’s journal gives Parker the courage to start to really live—and it also gives her reasons to question what really happened the night of the accident. Armed with clues from the past, Parker enlists the help of her best friend, Kat, and Trevor, her longtime crush, to track down some leads. The mystery ends up taking Parker places that she never could have imagined. And she soon finds that taking the road less traveled makes all the difference.
Whoa. I read this book in a day. A day, I tell you! It was a beautiful story. Everything came back to the title. I am not a Robert Frost expert but I still caught all of the references. The overall idea: Nothing gold can stay. Julianna was part of the golden couple, her hair was golden, and her memory was golden. However, nothing is what it seems and every step you take influences where you end up.
Parker really grew during this story. I identified with all of her hard work, and I was worried about the ending but I was really happy with it. I couldn't believe what reading one notebook could lead to. It's funny, but I wish all the best to the characters in this story. (Is it possible to wish the best to fictional characters' futures? )I really hope Parker learns what she wants rather than what her mother pushes her towards.
This was different from anything I have ever read, and I loved it. If you need something unique, pick this one up.