You can pick your friends, but you can't pick your parents. Young football star Buddy McNeal would like to change that, but when a chance meeting on a creek bank sets a future trainwreck in motion, he wished he'd picked his friends a little more carefully. Feeling betrayed and neglected after his parents' split, Buddy doesn't care much about anything, not even his promising football career. Crystal Crowe is a new girl at school, and describing her as coming from the wrong side of the tracks is an understatement. After a brief, eye-opening encounter, Crystal disappears until Buddy's senior year, just when his life is back on track. Helping a friend in need becomes an obsession for Buddy until the only kind of help Crystal wants may just get him killed.
This is a marvelous and well-written coming of age tale wrapped in edge-of-your-seat suspense. Told in a series of flashbacks as the main character is interrogated by police, it evokes all the great moments of a classic Perry Mason mystery, revealing one shocking detail after another and keeping the reader hooked until the very end.
The dialogue is wry and witty. The concerns, obstacles and temptations that contemporary young adults can face is vividly and entertainingly portrayed. We feel for Buddy even as he's making bad choices but in the end he shows true strength of character. We meet him as a disgruntled, naive teen but definitely leave him as a grown man.
A desperately great read!