Scarlet considers herself someone who fixes other people’s problems…until she becomes one when she falls in love with her sister’s husband in this beautiful young adult novel about love and family from National Book Award finalist and Printz Honor medal winner Deb Caletti.
Scarlet spends most of her time worrying about other people. Some are her friends, others are practically strangers, and then there are the ones no else even notices. Trying to fix their lives comes naturally to her. And pushing her own needs to the side is part of the deal. So when her older sister comes home unexpectedly married and pregnant, Scarlet has a new person to worry about.
But all of her good intentions are shattered when the unthinkable happens: she falls for her sister’s husband. For the first time in a long time, Scarlet’s not fixing a problem, she’s at the center of one. And ignoring her feelings doesn’t seem to be an option…
When 17-year-old Scarlett's older sister, Juliet, moves back home pregnant, she brings with her a romantic new husband she'd never before even mentioned. While Scarlett's feelings for Hayden grow she secretly reads the love notes he writes to Juliet and sneaks out to join him for late-night chats he remains devoted to her pretty sister, who in turn seems fixated on her loser high school boyfriend. Caletti's (The Secret Life of Prince Charming) main characters are well drawn and complex, especially mature Scarlett, who, to her own detriment, is constantly looking after everyone else in her life. Readers may find some of Scarlett's neighbors over the top, such as an elderly couple whose belief in Internet scams leads them to Africa. Scarlett's devotion to them also seems extreme, but it clarifies both why being needed sometimes made me feel good and why she feels connected to kind Hayden. In the end, readers will be willing to overlook some of the more outlandish characters to focus on the moving story involving Scarlett and her family. Ages 12 up.