Just Like Fate by Cat Patrick
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
As a kid I always explored every option of the Choose Your Own adventure books (just to see what would happen in each possible scenario), so I’ll admit I’m a total sucker for Sliding Doors premises and JUST LIKE FATE delivers with a fun YA spin.
The crossroads for high school student Caroline is the “Should I stay or should I go” (Yes, The Clash were stuck in my head for most of this book) moment when Caroline has to decide whether to hold vigil by the bedside of her possibly dying grandmother or to blow off some stress for just one night at a party with her best friend. From there the book divides into STAY and GO chapters (it was very helpful to have the chapters and page bottoms clearly labeled for easy reference because there were a few instances where it got confusing).
What I loved about this book was that both good and bad things happened to Caroline either way- it wasn’t a clear-cut case of, “Well, of course the right thing to do is stay with Grams.” For a story that sometimes crept close to the line of didactic (but never crossed it), that was something the writing pair of Cat Patrick and Suzanne Young really nailed. I also may have found a new book boyfriend in GO’s charmer, Chris. His flirtation with Caroline felt genuine and sweet- right down to the little detail of him resisting the urge to serenade her with Sweet Caroline. As a mom to a Caroline, this happens with alarming frequency and each time the book touched on that, I giggled.
This publishes at the end of August- just in time for a great Labor Day beach read!
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