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Children's LiteratureMeet Cassidy, a "pretty wallflower," and her assorted friends: sex pot Larissa ("If I were a guy, I would totally do you"); Eric, Cassidy's long-standing beau (who has yet to say ‘I love you'); and Joe ("brother material, not stud material"), the childhood friend who makes her laugh, and knows her better than she knows herself. Cassidy's parents are M.I.A., conveniently allowing her to do whatever she wants. Roped into a French summer class, Cassidy's initial disappointment is forgotten the instant she lays eyes on the T.A. ("Once she caught a glimpse of Zach's cute butt, she could barely remember her zip code.") Zach, a college sophomore, falls head-over-heels in love with 16-year-old Cassidy. Meanwhile she and Eric are about to celebrate their 2-year anniversary by—what else?—losing their virginity. The problem is Cassidy's fickle heart now belongs to Zach: what's a girl to do? Throughout this and other mind-numbing dilemmas, Cassidy asks dependable Joe for advice via letters (he's away for the summer). Unfortunately, when he suggests telling Eric the truth and moving cautiously with Zach, she completely ignores him, dumping Eric (after he goes to great trouble and expense planning The Big Night), and losing her virginity to summer fling, Zach. In the end, of course, she ends up with good old Joe, who, happily for them both, returns with a tan and a nice bod. Managing to be both predictable and implausible, this heavy-handed, contrived book is like junk food: cheap, insubstantial, and bad for you. 2006, HarperCollins, Ages 15 to 17.