Some Mistakes Were Made

HarperTeen. Apr. 2022. 384p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780063088535.
Gr 10 Up–It’s been a year since Ellis was banished to the West Coast; a year of being cut off from her best friend and love, Easton Albrey. She’s freshly graduated from high school when Easton’s brother Tucker Albrey swoops back into Ellis’s life and convinces her to return to their small town in Indiana for his mother’s 50th birthday bash. Going back means facing the heartache and betrayal that obliterated her life last summer and Ellis isn’t sure she’ll survive it. Debut author Dwyer conceives a touching romance between two teens, whose inseparable bond is tested by calamitous events. Flashbacks of Ellis from ages 11 to 17 creates the groundwork for the beautiful, complicated, and messy connections Ellis has with her parents, the Albreys, and Easton. Ellis’s fractured relationship with her family reveals the struggle of obligation vs. happiness, which seamlessly plays into the underlying tension in the novel of the haves (the Albreys) and the have nots (Ellis). This, in turn, drives home the notion that nurture—or the environment in which one is raised—affects how one construes and reacts to situations. Ellis’s upbringing has made her emotionally blinded by self-doubt, which, when mixed with Easton’s earnestly privileged outlook, implodes their relationship. It’s only when both realize and face the mistakes made that they’re woven back together. Readers will desperately root for Ellis and Easton in this unforgettable romance. All characters read white.
VERDICT A perfectly emotional read for fans of Nicola Yoon and Becky Albertalli, this coming-of-age romance is one not to miss.

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