Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Review: A Little Friendly Advice

Being a best girlfriend isn't easy. Having a best girlfriend isn't easy either. When one girlfriend experiences a crisis, the entire friendship is in jeopardy. This is the premise of Siobhan Vivian's A Little Friendly Advice, a smart Young Adult novel for readers ages thirteen and up.

16-year-old Ruby runs in a pack of four: There's artistic Ruby, smart and social Beth, basketball star and hothead Katherine, and flirtatious, boy-crazy Maria. But Beth and Ruby are best friends within this group and have been since grade school. In fact, Beth has been Ruby's best friend since Ruby's dad disappeared, leaving the family for good.

On the night of Ruby's 16th birthday party, the girls get together to have birthday cake and then head out to drink a smuggled bottle of champagne. And that's when Ruby's dad Jim shows up for the first time in years. Jim's arrival sets of a week-long crisis for Ruby during which Ruby tries to understand why her parents split up, why her dad left, and, most important, why her best friend Beth is keeping secrets from her about Jim.

During this week of turmoil, Ruby also meets her first real boyfriend, tries to come to terms with the volatile Katherine and Katherine's own family problems, and tries to stay afloat at school. But, the heart of the novel is Ruby and Beth’s friendship and what it means to be a best friend: When should you tell the truth, when should you shield your friend from potentially stressful information, and when you should you offer just a little friendly advice?

Told in Ruby's voice, A Little Friendly Advice explores rocky family relationships, first kisses and experiences with alcohol, and, most of all, best friendships. It's a not-to-be-missed honest read for teen girls.
Other Blog Reviews:

Teen Book Review
The Page Flipper
Page Numbered
The Book Muncher

If I've missed your review, please leave me a comment and I'll update.
My sun overdose continues. I burned myself yesterday and it was wonderful.