Friends Like These

Delacorte. Nov. 2022. 384p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780593309674.
Gr 10 Up–Jake is determined to make the most of senior year—the last year he will have before his girlfriend, Jessica, moves away for college and inevitably breaks up with him. He convinces Jessica to attend an end-of-summer party hosted by his ex, Tegan, who is still madly in love with him. After much underage drinking and a highly publicized act of sex, everyoneself world is turned upside-down. A girl is missing, Jake can’t remember what happened at the party, Jessica won’t talk to him, and EVERYONE is talking about “the video.” When a body turns up on the beach, lies start to pile up and no one knows who to trust. Alvarez’s novel explores the ever-changing dynamics of high school, how competition can turn friends into enemies, and how even the simplest of lies can have an impact on everything. This fast-paced thriller will keep readers hooked right up to the last page. It is geared toward mature teens comfortable with references to sex, drugs, drinking, and some violence. The number for the National Sexual Assault Hotline is listed in the back matter. Main characters present as white; ethnicity is not stated.
VERDICT Recommended for purchase where thrillers and mysteries are popular.

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