Monday, November 14, 2011

Saving June-Hannah Harrington

Saving June

Hannah Harrington

Harlequin Teen, Nov 22 2011, $9.99

ISBN: 9780373210244

In Michigan June Scott seemed perfect, but just before graduating from high school she commits suicide. Her sixteen year old sister Harper is grieving and in shock as she cannot believe June took her life. She seeks clues in the musical mix June listened to when she died but remains confused. Unable to deal with the sympathy from those paying respects at the Scott home, Harper hides in the back yard with her BFF Laney. The younger sibling loathes her divorced parents dividing the ashes between them. Instead she wants to spread her sister’s ashes in California where June wanted to go, but lacks transportation to do the deed.

At the funeral she meets Jake, who offers to drive the two girls to California. Harper and Laney accept the offer and begin an odyssey to spread the ashes in the Pacific. Jake and Harper are attracted to each other, but their relationship will end if she learns about his relationship with June and his involvement in her suicide.

This is an insightful look at the impact of a teen suicide on those in her sphere who love and care about her. The musical debates on the road distract Harper from her struggles to accept she will never see her sister again, but those refrains are temporary as the kid sister goes though the emotional stages of grief. Not an easy read even with the music playing a major role, teen readers and their parents will appreciate the profound Saving June.

Harriet Klausner

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