Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Splendor--Elana K. Arnold

Title: Splendor
Author: Elana K. Arnold
Publisher: Random House Children's Books, 2013.
Pages: 352 p.
Source: VOYA
Compensation: None

Scarlett Wenderoth has had enough of heartache after barely surviving a bout with depression and anorexia trying to cope with the sudden death of her older brother following a brain aneurysm. Unfortunately, life has other plans for Scarlett. Her mother has finally recovered from her grief but has left her father and moved off their tiny island, her best friend Lily has decided to be even wilder and crazier than she can handle, and her boyfriend Will has left Catalina Island to attend Yale on the opposite side of the country. Scarlett's senior year of high school is not starting out well. Scarlett tries to focus on her pregnant horse and her new study of Kabbalah, but life has one more heartbreak in store for her.

As in Elana K. Arnold's earlier Sacred, teens will gravitate toward Scarlett and her problems. Arnold has painted a very realistic picture of teenage girls and their conflicting emotions. Scarlett is able to empathize with Lily's mom and see how she deserves more patience and respect from Lily, but she is unable to see this with her own mother. Fans of the first novel will appreciate continuing Scarlett's story and finding some closure with this sequel. Readers unfamiliar with Sacred will still be able to enjoy Splendor, but not quite as much. 

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