Sunday 1 April 2012

92. Skin Deep by Laura Jarratt

Skin Deep by Laura Jarratt
Published March 2012 Hardie Grant Egmont

From the publisher:

After the car crash that leaves her best friend dead, Jenna is permanently scarred. She struggles to rebuild her life, but every stare in the street, every time she looks in the mirror, makes her want to retreat further from the world. Until she meets Ryan. Ryan is also an outsider. When he and his mother arrive in town she tells him this time it will be different. He doesn't believe her. Until he meets Jenna. As Jenna and Ryan grow closer, repercussions from the crash continue to reverberate through the community. And then a body is found...

Jenna is a teenager whose life has, in her eyes, been ruined.  Because of one stupid mistake she now has to live with a scarred face and the memory of seeing her friends die in a horrific car accident.

Ryan lives with his Mum, on a narrowboat.  They never stay in one place for long, he has no friends, all he wants is to find a place to settle down.  In addition to this, his mum suffers from bipolar disorder, so he often has to take on the role of parent.

When Ryan meets Jenna he is shocked by her face but it doesn't take him long to see past it.  What starts as a friendship, becomes a  romance and  for the first time in a long time, Jenna starts to feel confident enough to venture out into the world again.

The accident was a result of the driver having had alcohol and reckless driving.  Although two people died on the accident, the driver was not charged.  This has caused friction in the community.  When he turns up dead, Ryan is the prime suspect.

There is obviously the message in here about teenagers and driving, and the danger that can occur when drinking and drugs are thrown into the mix.

It's also a story about friendship and seeing people for what they really are.  Realising that you have to get to know someone before you can decide what they are like, it's not something that you can tell just by looking at them.

Who will like this book: Girls age 15+
Read it if you like: Lucas by Kevin Brooks

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