Dear Cassie (Pretty Amy #2) by Lisa Burstein

What if the last place you should fall in love is the first place that you do? You’d think getting sent to Turning Pines Wilderness Camp for a month-long rehabilitation “retreat” and being forced to re-live it in this journal would be the worst thing that’s ever happened to me. You’d be wrong. There’s the reason I was sent to Turning Pines in the first place: I got arrested. On prom night. With my two best friends, who I haven’t talked to since and probably never will again. And then there’s the real reason I was sent here. The thing I can’t talk about with the guy I can’t even think about. What if the moment you’ve closed yourself off is the moment you start to break open? But there’s this guy here. Ben. And the more I swear he won’t—he can’t—the deeper under my skin he’s getting. After the thing that happened, I promised I’d never fall for another boy’s lies. And yet I can’t help but wonder…what if?

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I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I had the luck of getting to review The Next Forever a while back and that was when I discovered the amazing way Lisa Burstein is able to hook you and stuck you right into her books. I praised The Next Forever and I was certain that Dear Cassie would be just as great. How did I know this? Well, it’s not so much the story that’s being told, that has the effect on you… it’s has more to do with Lisa Burstein’s ability to create amazing characters with her top notch character development, never mind the fact that she can hook you in real deep with the emotional aspects of her tales. I can’t say I’ve never heard of the stories being told, but I can say that from the sniffs and shy smiles I’ve experienced during both books I’ve read so far – she sucks you in and boy are you in deep. Lately, I’ve been feeling as if I’ve outgrown young adult… I mean… about time right, since I’m thirty and all lol… but I didn’t even realize that this was a young adult at all. It’s definitely clean and nothing goes over the young adult mark… but I feel as if maybe it was because Cassie didn’t seem like a 17 year old… Ben seemed older too… So I didn’t feel as if I was reading about kiddies… except maybe that the hottest thing that actually happened was kissing and the worst shocker was the ‘F’ word… but overall, it was a mature young adult read. We follow Cassie… as you probably could have guess… and the book starts out as a diary of sorts, each chapter representing a new day in her correctional ‘camp’ hell. There’s a secret, but when is there never one… if you are smart enough, you click it pretty soon. The path leading up to the reveal of the ‘secret’ is vague but not irritatingly so. I liked that. I hate it when authors play cat and mouse with your mind… for pages and pages and then when it breaks, it’s not even as dramatic as they made it seem. So in Dear Cassie, I rather liked the way ‘it’ was brought up, but wasn’t mentioned page after page. What I didn’t like, and one of the reason’s I’m rating it a four, is because it did seem to have a lot of irrelevant mumbo-jumbo. Especially, if I consider the way it ended – another reason for the four… there was so much to be told within this book, that the ending just suddenly pounced on your and you are left going – that’s it? And then going back to see if you didn’t miss something, since the entire book was so descriptive and informative, how come the ending didn’t go that way?

“What’s his name?” Nez whispered. “Asshole,” I whispered back. “Wick,” Rawe said, her voice exploding out of her like a volcano, “if I say your name one more time . . .” “Jeez Louise,” Nez whispered. “You better make this one.”

Cassie Meet’s Ben at ‘the camp from hell’ and much to Cassie’s constant ability to push him away, he hangs tight and keeps trying to break through her shell. It’s very sweet… – It’s just very sweet, nothing more. I can’t say I felt electric currents running across the pages, but it was determined and… sweet – There I go again 🙂

Rating: 4 Stars

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