Published January 24th 2012 by Candlewick Press
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Can a twelve-step program help Sadie kick her unrequited crush for good? Abby McDonald serves up her trademark wit and wisdom in a hilarious new novel.
Seventeen-year-old Sadie is in love: epic, heartfelt, and utterly onesided. The object of her obsession - ahem, affection - is her best friend, Garrett Delaney, who has been oblivious to Sadie's feelings ever since he sauntered into her life and wowed her with his passion for Proust (not to mention his deep-blue eyes). For two long, painful years, Sadie has been Garrett's constant companion, sharing his taste in everything from tragic Russian literature to art films to '80s indie rock - all to no avail. But when Garrett leaves for a summer literary retreat, Sadie is sure that the absence will make his heart grow fonder - until he calls to say he's fallen in love. With some other girl!
A heartbroken Sadie realizes that she's finally had enough. It's time for total Garrett detox! Aided by a barista job, an eclectic crew of new friends (including the hunky chef, Josh), and a customized selfhelp guide, Sadie embarks on a summer of personal reinvention full of laughter, mortifying meltdowns, and a double shot of love.
Getting Over Garrett Delaney sounded like it was going to be a fluffy, quick read. And for the most part, I guess it was, but it also has a great message - and one that can be interpreted in so many ways, whether it's "don't let someone treat you like dirt" or "there's strength in numbers." There are just so many ways this book can be good for you.
I've heard about a lot of people who didn't like the beginning, and to be honest, I didn't, either. There's a lot of funny banter between Garrett and Sadie, and it's easy to see how easy-going friendship. But Sadie is almost obsessed with Garrett, which is frustrating because for the first 30 pages or so, he's really all she's thinking about.
It definitely gets way better after that, though. A great thing about Sadie is that she manages to make new friends. She might be a little mopey and whiny after Garrett leaves, but she gets a job. She makes friends. Which shows you that Sadie is a fairly strong character, and it doesn't set a terrible stereotype for teenage girls - that we all turn into a complete mess because of a guy.
Another awesome thing about Sadie is that she doesn't just use another guy to get over Garrett. I think it's a little weird that she uses an actual plan to try and get over him, but it's also something I've never really seen used before, and it provides for an entertaining read.
I think the best part of this book - besides the great messages it gives - are the fact that once you're about a third of the way through the book, it's not just about Sadie's problems anymore. The new friends she's made - who I think are all awesome secondary characters - have problems, too, and Sadie doesn't just brush them aside in favor of her own. She tries to help them, too.
I think (hope) I can talk a little bit about Josh, since he's mentioned in the blurb. While Josh is a great character, the relationship between him and Sadie is a little confusing. Their relationship is platonic most of the time, but right towards the end it's not. The confusing part is that Josh treats Sadie exactly like he treats all of the other girls they work with. It's not in a bad way, it's just something that lead me to believe that he doesn't have any feelings for her that aren't platonic.
The only other issue I have is Garrett. He doesn't seem like a terrible person, and Sadie obviously doesn't think he is, but he's kind of portrayed as a bad guy, mainly because of all of Sadie's friends. They make him seem like an awful person, so I kind of developed an unlike of him, which made it frustrating whenever Sadie talked to him.
Overall: This is definitely a fluffy read, but once you get past the beginning, I also think Sadie is a great example of what YA teenagers should be like. 4 stars.