Library Journal Review
Gr 10 Up-Andrea is plucked by her drug-addicted mother, Ayla, from her loving grandmother's house after the older woman dies. Andrea becomes homeless and lives in a car, while Ayla tries to get money and food from guys she sleeps with. When Ayla gets a new boyfriend, Judd, they move in with him, and Andrea is forced to help him package and distribute drugs for her keep. Judd is abusive and Andrea doesn't know what to do. She doesn't want to abandon her mother, but when things turn even worse, the teen starts a plan to save herself. The complicated relationships that involve Andrea are realistically drawn, down to the psychological trauma that each one entails. The flawed main characters have their own issues that Palmer presents in an authentic way. Readers will sympathize with all of the characters, even the antagonists. The debut author does not leave any traumatic thought unturned. This is textbook-contemporary YA, but it feels fresh under Palmer's expert writing. There are no wasted words, and the mounting events will keep readers on the edge of their seats as they cheer on the protagonist and cringe from the horrendous situations she experiences. VERDICT An excellent selection for YA shelves.-Rachel Reinwald, Lake Villa District Library, IL © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Booklist Review
Palmer's powerful debut explores how far a person will go and how much they can endure for survival. Honor-roll student Andrea's life is turned upside down and inside out when her grandmother dies. In the custody of her estranged, drug-addict mother and living with her mom's abusive drug-dealer boyfriend, Andrea finds herself pulled into a world where her book smarts are of little use. With the prospect of college as her only escape, Andrea tries to keep her head down and survive just long enough to get out. But when things take a dark turn, she realizes her freedom may cost her everything and everyone she cares about. Palmer masterfully balances Andrea's strength and helplessness, demonstrating how easy it is for anyone to become a victim of abuse. This is a gripping read that leaves the reader both eager to find out what will happen next and terrified to discover what else Andrea must endure. An exciting introduction to a talented writer.--Essien, Enobong Copyright 2018 Booklist