Author: Sarah Nicolas
Rating: 2.5 - 3/5
Thanks to NetGalley and Entangled Publishing, LLC for letting me receive a digital copy of this book before its official release.
The last person Riya Johnson expected to run into at her new summer camp is Courtney Chastain—her childhood best friend and the girl who broke her heart after a secret, mind-blowing, life-altering kiss. She definitely didn’t expect to be sharing a bunk bed with her for four long weeks.Even two days after reading this book, I can't decide on a proper rating. It was nice, not my favourite read ever, but cute enough to continue.
Courtney has what every girl wants—she’s beautiful, rich, and the object of every boy’s desire at Camp Pine Ridge. Too bad none of them make her feel an iota of what Riya’s kiss did all those years ago. But Courtney needs to uphold appearances at all costs—even if it means instigating an all-out prank war with Riya as her main target.
Neither girl can stop thinking about the other… but that doesn’t mean they can give up past hurts and take a chance on a future together.
Honestly, there need to be more lesbian young adult novels. There are too few of them out there, but I think it'd be important for publishers to support these kind of stories since a lot of teens struggle with coming out or their own sexuality. Maybe reading a young adult books that contain this topic would help them deal with it better.
Surprisingly, though the two main characters - Courtney and Riya (like that name, by the way!) - have got a past, there aren't any flashbacks or chapters written about that. One certain scene is mentioned, but that's it. I am not sure how to feel about that. I guess after kind of expecting flashbacks, I am still okay with the author not writing them down. The story itself didn't need those additional scenes. But we do get to find out that a lot has happened ever since. Courtney is a popular girl with strict parents that would rather forget she was ever friends with Riya, and Riya is exactly the opposite. During the story, Courtney is revealed as an insecure girl, while Riya is pretty upfront about everything. Opposites attract, don't they?!
I did like Courtney's brother. He was a cutie, not mentioned often enough, haha. Dee was a cool girl, too. Much like a confident rock chick or something. And sorry for comparing, but the whole story reminded me of Pretty Little Liars, minus the camp thing itself. Probably because it's the only teen TV show that I watch(ed), including a lesbian couple. In my mind, Riya was like Emily and Coutrney was like... Well, more like Paige, for example.
The pranks the girls pulled on each other annoyed me after a bit, but that's my taste. I was even annoyed by their talents and the talent show. That's not the author's fault, I just didn't enjoy that, sorry. And the volleyball match... (That makes it sound like I hated the story, which is not true.) Although, reading about how Courtney struggled with her sexuality and how strict her parents were wouldn't have been enough to fill out the story. So her talent and also Riya's were an important detail (sorry for only saying it's a detail) for the book.
So, if you're looking for a read about two girls instead of the same old bad boy and good girl kind of thing, I suggest you pick up Keeping Her Secret. It's a decent read, one that should lined up in school's libraries, public libraries and be recommented by parents, as well!