Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Sunday, June 18, 2017

The Problem With Forever by Jennifer L. Armentrout

How I Heard About It:  I'm always amazed when I scroll through my "Want to Read" list on GoodReads and see a title I don't remember adding.  That was the case with this title.  I was looking to read a young-adult novel and decided to give this story a try.  I downloaded it via Cloud Library and read it on the iPad.  

What It Is About:  Mallory is heading into her senior year.  It should be a year of friends, socializing, and romance.  Not for Mallory.  This is her first year attending public school since being home schooled the last four years.  That was when she was "adopted" by two loving parents after years of living in the foster care system.  During these horrific years living with a cruel man and "sick" woman, Mallory endured more than any human should have to.  Luckily for her, she had Rider.  He lived with her in this "hell hole", and protected her from all the evil.  After a particular horrible night, both of these young people were rescued, but separated.  Mallory ended up with in a loving home, while Rider continued in the "system".  She can't quite believe it when she sees Rider her first day as a senior.  Mallory has learned since her foster-care days that the less she says, the better.  During the last four years, she has had therapy and is learning to express herself.  Mallory and Rider are in the same speech class.  She isn't sure can be successful in this class, but with the help of her friend, she learns the strength that is truly inside of herself.  

What I Thought Of It:  When I first started the book, I was drawn in and was thinking it was going to be of those stories about surviving the unthinkable.  I would say about 1/3 of the book was about Mallory and Rider during their foster care years, but the other 2/3's was more of a high school romance story.  This isn't a bad thing, but wasn't what I was expecting.  It was interesting to read about Mallory and Rider coming back together and getting to know each other away from their earlier years.  They each handled the horrible events of their childhood in different ways, and this affected the way they interacted as seniors.  I enjoyed the growth and progress that Mallory made during her senior year.  It was also interesting to read about Rider and how he was able (and not able) to move forward from the years of protecting Mallory.  

Who Should Read It:  In my opinion I think all young-adult readers would find this a satisfying read.  Female readers will be able to relate to Mallory while male readers will find Rider a strong and unique male character.  Readers who enjoy survival stories with characters showing courage and bravery, will also enjoy The Problem with Forever.  

Rating:  4 STARS out of 5 Stars

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