In Too Deep
By Amanda Grace
(aka Mandy Hubbard)
I never meant for anyone to get hurt. All I wanted to do that night was make a play for Carter Wellesley. His heartless rejection was mortifying, but people got the wrong idea when they saw me leaving his bedroom, crying. That’s how rumors of rape started.
Now girls at school are pouring out their sympathy to me. Guys too. But not everyone’s on my side. The school has become a war zone and the threats are getting scary. What began as poetic justice has morphed into something bigger–forcing me to make a terrible choice.
This Blonde’s Review:
In many ways Sam is a stereotypical teenage girl who isn’t confident enough to be herself. Sam is in love with her best friend, but he has an off and on girlfriend. Rather than deal with her situation as it is, Sam chooses to dress seductively in hopes of hooking up with the school’s golden boy. She hopes that the flirtatious and newly single Carter will be interested in her new look and that it will also make her best friend jealous enough to see what he’s been missing.
Her plans don’t work out like she hopes. Sam finds herself drunk and unsteady when Carter turns her down insultingly. When she leaves the room crying and looking disheveled another girl asks her if what she thinks happened Did. Sam thinks it’s obvious that the she was drunk and tried to hit on a guy only to be turned down. She doesn’t realize what the girl really thinks until much later.
Luckily for Sam, her best friend shares her feelings and they become a couple that weekend. Since they spent the weekend in new couple bliss neither of them are aware of the rumors spreading about Sam and Carter. At school Sam believes everyone knows that Carter turned her down and insulted her, so she tries to ignore the stares and whispers. When girls ask her if it’s true she confirms what she believes they’re asking.
It isn’t until much later in the day that Sam discovers what everyone believes happened to her. Sam has always been the girl who will take the easier route rather than confronting a problem, so she decides to leave it for the day and figure out the answer tomorrow.
Except Sam’s pattern of avoiding the hard stuff doesn’t change overnight and she soon finds herself getting deeper than she intended. She may not have started to rumor and she may not have known what she was confirming at first, but before long she can’t use that as protection. Soon she is lying by allowing people to believe it and then by leading them to believe it, with the encouragement of others at times.
Sam’s primary fear is how her boyfriend will react. She knows that as time goes on it will be harder to make him understand. She starts looking for a way to have it all, but is that really possible by the time everyone chooses sides?
I really enjoyed this story. Sam is a flawed character but we can still care about her and want her to be happy. She has difficulties at home with an overprotective father, but she isn’t mistreated either. Sam has supportive people around her and she could have come clean at any time, but instead she allows it to build until it becomes harder to forgive. This story feels like it could be written true to life if a situation like this occurred. I prefer books that feel like they could be real and give us a glimpse of what could happen and make us think about how we’d react.
The way this book ended feels perfect. Sam is forced to grow up and recognize who she is and what she is willing to allow happen around her. She also has to accept the consequences of her actions and figure out if she’ll get to keep her best friend or not.
If you enjoy reading about characters who have to learn how to stand up even when it’s hard appeals to you then Sam is a character you’ll want to know. This is a story that will show you how that girl learns to be strong enough to deal with a misunderstanding of life changing proportions.