My current read just skipped from page 200 to page 233, and that rather annoys me because it's only from 2006 and obviously hasn't been read a ton, and there's no gap where the pages should be, even, so they're just missing. So I'm doing a review to try to get unannoyed at that. If it wasn't a good book, I'd probably be really snarky. Anyways, review time.
The Rules for Hearts by Sara Ryan
Summary (from the inside flap of the book jacket): Battle Hall Davies is sure of some things: She's going to Reed this fall; she loves girls; and her older brother Nick, is cooler and more together than she'll ever be. Nick ran away from home when Battle was thirteen. Now, four and a half years later, he's tracked her down, and she's spending the summer between high school and college in Forest House, the group home where he lives in Portland.
It is a summer of surprises. Battle is swept into Forest House's community Shakespeare production and its all-night card games, and into th arms of her new housemate, Meryl. It turns out Nick is not who Battle thought he was - and Battle's not who she thought she was, either.
Review: I have a fondness for books about the theatre. I'm not an actor in any way shape or form - severe stage fright - but it's still one of my favourite things to read about, which gives The Rules for Hearts a headstart of sorts. It wasn't a perfect book, though. It was well-written and easy to get into, but it didn't wow me. The characters are interesting, it's a good enough storyline, the plot progressed at a good rate, but it was missing that something, you know?
I think my biggest complaint is the brother who she's supposed to be getting to know again, we don't get to know him much. He seems very removed, and slightly underdeveloped. I mean, Battle hadn't seen him in four years but not once did they actually talk about what he'd been doing for those four years. And his big problem that she discovers at the end of the book, there was no lead-up to it, almost no foreshadowing at all.
Conclusion: It's a pretty good book, worth reading, but I wouldn't buy it. Bonus points for the pretty cover, so three and a half roses out of five.