WHAT HAPPENED TO GOODBYE
Dessen’s a consummate storyteller, but this tale doesn’t have the usual emotional resonance. There’s much to-do surrounding Mclean’s proclivity for changing personas when moving to a new town, but it never feels fully explored. There’s plenty of good; it’s highly enjoyable, just lacking some of the author’s usual heart.
Mclean and her divorced dad move again, this time to the town of Lakeview. Once there, she is ready to pick up old habits: introducing a persona to the town that’s different from her own. But she finds it’s hard channeling someone new; here in Lakeview, she’s just Mclean, maybe partly because of next-door neighbor Dave. He’s brilliant and on house arrest after veering off the path his parents set for him. Mclean falls for him, but nothing is ever easy. When the time comes to leave, where will that leave her? (VIKING, May, 402 pp., $19.99, ISBN: 9780670012947, HC, 12 & Up)