Smart girls aren’t supposed to do stupid things. On her first day at Green River Community College, Madelyn Hawkins meets Bennett Cartwright, her biology professor. He’s funny. He’s interested. And he has no idea that Madelyn is only sixteen. When they’re together, Madelyn feels more alive than she’s ever felt before. And she knows Bennett feels the same way. She also knows that if she tells him her real age, their relationship will be over. So Madelyn makes a simple decision. She won’t tell him.
This novel exploring the romance between a student and her teacher may spark controversy, but Grace (a pseudonym for author/agent Mandy Hubbard) treats delicate issues with honesty and control. Written as confessional letters, the story unfolds as 16-year-old Madelyn Hawkins explains how her infatuation spins out of control after she begins taking classes at a community college. Madelyn isn't the only biology student who finds the instructor, Bennett Cartwright, attractive, although she doesn't expect he'd have any interest in her outside the classroom. Nonetheless, the two are drawn to each other, first during a chance meeting on a hiking trail, then on secret dates at Bennett's house. Bennett thinks Madelyn is older than she is, and Madelyn, fed up with her domineering parents and hungry for Bennett's attention, puts off telling him the truth. It's clear from the beginning that the relationship will end badly, but sorting out who, if anyone, is to blame will give readers food for thought. Rather than presenting answers, Grace (In Too Deep) offers a thorough examination of the gray area between right and wrong. Ages 13 up.