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A coming-of-age story about first loves and the dynamic of families.  Charlie Lewis is 16-years old when his parents separate.   Charlie is left to worry about his depressed father.  He struggles with his academics and begins stealing from his work.  That summer, he meets Fran Fisher and his entire life brightens in one afternoon.  He begins to see hope in his future.  But to see more of her, he must join a theatre company putting on Romeo + Juliet.  With no experience in acting and no reason other than to see Fran more, Charlie joins.  And so begins a life-changing summer for Charlie where he learns more about himself and life in a few months than he has over the course of his lifetime.
Riddled with teenage angst and insecurities, this novel is something that I’m sure many young readers can relate to.  However, it was very long winded and I found myself struggling to pick the book up again, simply just reading it to get through it.  The characters were annoying and it centers a lot around Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet which I found to be uninteresting.  I did enjoy the takeaway about first loves but while I really wanted to enjoy this book, it was bland and fell a bit flat for me, missing the mark.
I won this book in a @BookishFirst raffle.  Thank you to @BookishFirst and #MarinerBooks {#partner} for gifting me with an advanced readers copy in exchange for an independent and honest review.