There’s a lot Zoey would like to forget. Like how her father has knocked up his twenty-four- year old girlfriend. Like Zoey’s fear that the whole town will find out about her mom’s nervous breakdown. Like darkly handsome bad boy Doug taunting her at school. Feeling like her life is about to become a complete mess, Zoey fights back the only way she knows how, using her famous attention to detail to make sure she’s the perfect daughter, the perfect student, and the perfect girlfriend to ultra-popular football player Brandon.
But then Zoey is in a car crash, and the next day there’s one thing she can’t remember at all—the entire night before. Did she go parking with Brandon, like she planned? And if so, why does it seem like Brandon is avoiding her? And why is Doug—of all people— suddenly acting as if something significant happened between the two of them? Zoey dimly remembers Doug pulling her from the wreck, but he keeps referring to what happened that night as if it was more, and it terrifies Zoey to admit how much is a blank to her. Controlled, meticulous Zoey is quickly losing her grip on the all-important details of her life—a life that seems strangely empty of Brandon, and strangely full of Doug.
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About the Author
Read an Excerpt
Every strong swimmer has a story about nearly drowning. This is mine:
Late one June afternoon I was driving home from my summer job at my dad’s water park, Slide with Clyde, when my phone rang and Brandon’s name flashed on the screen. He knew I never answered my phone while driving. And everybody working at Slide with Clyde today had heard that my dad had gotten Ashley, the twenty-four-year-old human resources manager, pregnant. That meant all my friends knew, because I’d found Brandon a job there and my entire swim team jobs as lifeguards, all seventeen of us—everybody but Doug Fox.
My dad had left work a little early—to tell my mom before she found out from another source, I guessed. So if Brandon wanted to talk to me now, it must be important. Maybe it had something to do with my parents.
I parked my vintage Volkswagon Bug in the courtyard outside my house, between my dad’s Benz and my mom’s eco-friendly hybrid, and cut the engine. The Bug had no air-conditioning. The Florida heat had been bearable while I was damp from swimming and the car was moving. But my bikini had dried underneath my T-shirt and gym shorts. The sun beat down. The heat crept through the open windows like a dangerous animal unafraid of humans and settled on my chest.
I picked up my phone and pushed the button to call Brandon back.
“Zoey,” he said.
“Hey, baby. Is something wrong?”
“Everything!” he exclaimed. “You’re going to kill me. You know how I was telling you at lunch about Clarissa?”
“Who?” I’d been distracted when I talked to him at lunch. I’d just learned the latest about Ashley.
“Clarissa? The brunette who works at the top of the Tropical Terror Plunge? She’s in college. You told me I should ask her out anyway.”
“Right.” I couldn’t believe he’d called me about this. We’d become friends because I was a good listener, and I gave him advice on his girl troubles—but surely he knew this was not the time.
“Well, I asked her out, and she said yes. But then her big sister came to pick her up from work, and Zoey . This chick was on fire . I don’t know how much older she is than me. She might have graduated from college already. That’s kind of a reach, even for me. But I could go out with Clarissa this once, give it a few weeks to cool off, then try her sister. What do you think?”
“I think you’re jailbait.”
He laughed shortly.
In the silence that followed, I heard how mean my comment had sounded. True but mean. I could not have a friendly conversation right now.
“Brandon, can we talk about this later?” I asked. “I’m sitting outside my house, and I think my dad is inside telling my mom about Ashley.”
“Oh,” Brandon said. He sounded like he’d really forgotten about the rumors at work today. “Are you scared?”
“I’m . . .” I stared at the front door. “No, I’m used to the idea. Everybody’s been talking about my dad and Ashley since the park opened in May. I’m more relieved that I don’t have to be the one to tell my mom.” I held up my hand and admired how perfect and smooth my manicure looked against the ancient steering wheel. “That’s awful of me, isn’t it?”
“Zoey, you could never be awful.”
With that one sentence, Brandon melted my heart all over again. He was a player, but he meant well. Deep down he was truly a sweet person and a good friend, and he knew how to make me feel better.
I ended the call with him and stood up in the courtyard. Sure enough, my parents’ voices reached me even here. I’d hurried home so I could support my mom through this. Now I wished I could unhear them screaming betrayal and divorce at each other. I’d sat on the edge of my seat up to the climax of this movie, but now that I knew it wouldn’t have a happy ending, I didn’t want to see.
Instead of going inside, I scooted around the side of the house, ripping off the T-shirt and shorts over my bikini as I went, kicking off my flip-flops, pulling the ponytail holder out of my hair. I hit the beach running.
A dark storm gathered on the horizon. Usually my beach here along the Florida Panhandle was gentle, only soft white sand underfoot, protected from sharp shells by the sandbars in deeper waters. Today the wind was full of sand, stinging my legs. Way down the beach I could just make out the red flags flying in front of the hotels, warning about strong surf and undertow. The flags were for tourists. They didn’t mean me.
I splashed into the ocean. The water was warmer than the air. It soothed me, flowing under my suit and across my limbs. The waves were high with the coming storm, but I was stronger than they were. I swam straight out over them, into deep water, purposefully tiring myself out. If only I could sleep tonight. A long way from the beach, I performed a flip-turn against an imaginary wall and swam back toward shore.
A wave crashed over my head, taking me by surprise, forcing salt water into my mouth, pushing me down. Cold jets curled around my ankles and towed me along. My knee skidded across the bare sandy bottom of the ocean.
I kicked toward the surface—a few massive kicks that took all my strength. If I reached the surface and stayed there, I could skim along the tops of the waves, stroking parallel to the beach until I escaped the current that wanted to drag me under and out.
I popped into the cold air. Just as I sucked in a breath, another wave plunged me under. In the roar I coughed water and strained against the urge to breathe more in. I tumbled along the bottom.
With strength I didn’t know I had left, I pushed off the bottom, propelling myself to the surface. I would glide through the water, pop into the air again, take that breath I’d missed.
The surface wasn’t where I thought it would be. I couldn’t fight the urge to breathe the ocean. That was when I realized I was going to die.
The ocean tossed me into the air like trash.
I breathed deep and long, already paddling before I hit the water. I knew the current would take me again soon. I didn’t waste my breath screaming. The beach was empty. No lifeguards patrolled this private section. Signs warned SWIM AT OWN RISK . Even if someone had come to my rescue, it would have been another foolish swimmer without a float. Both of us would have gone under, and it would have been my fault. I was the lifeguard.
I swam until I couldn’t swim anymore. Then I kept swimming.
Finally I escaped the current, stood upright on the bottom, waded to the shore, collapsed on the beach just as the storm broke over me. The rain beat me into the sand and seaweed.
I lay there for a long time, eyes squeezed shut against the raindrops, breathing. It was over. I thought only of myself, so thankful to be alive. I walked home in the cold rain.
But three months later, when my mom attempted suicide, I would look back on that afternoon as a warning. On coming home from work and hearing my parents argue, instead of escaping into the water like a troubled teen, I should have stayed and supported my mom. If I’d taken better care of her when she needed me, I could have prevented everything.
A TINY CHIP HAD APPEARED IN the pink polish at the tip of my pointer fingernail, where it was most noticeable. I rubbed the pad of my thumb across it, hoping no one would see it before I could fix it. My mom had always stressed to me that outward appearances were important. Strong personalities would challenge you no matter what, but you could repel the weaker people who might take a swipe at you by presenting yourself as moneyed, stylish, organized, together.
From across the emergency room waiting area, I heard a familiar voice, though muffled—a voice from school. I looked up from my fingernail. Doug Fox stood in the vestibule, framed by the black night outside.
Doug was hot, with black hair that never streaked in the chlorine and salt and sun, and eyes the strangest light green-blue, exactly the color of the ocean here. They were mesmerizing, framed by long black lashes in his tanned face. I could see why his eyes were famous among the girls at my high school. A boy with an ego as big as Doug’s didn’t deserve eyes like that.
I had a lot of classes with him this year. He was on the varsity swim team with me. And he hated me. He was the last person I wanted to see right now, when the doctors had told me my mom would live, but I didn’t know what would happen next.
Instinctively I ducked my head—which would do me no good if he looked in my direction. My hair wouldn’t drape forward to cover my face. It was still pulled back in the ponytail I’d worn home from work a few hours ago, when I’d walked into the eerily quiet apartment I shared with my mom and found her. Anyway, Doug and I had known each other forever. He would recognize me instantly. My hair in my face would not save me.
But he wasn’t looking at me. He talked with the policeman who’d responded first to my 911 call, who’d stood awkwardly in the apartment while I sat on my mom’s bed and held my mom’s hand until the ambulance came, and who had not abandoned me. My dad had been half an hour away in Destin, shopping the Labor Day sales for baby furniture with Ashley. He’d arrived only fifteen minutes ago and had burst through the hospital doors in front of me, into mysterious corridors that were off-limits to a minor like me. All this time, the policeman had sat with me in the empty waiting room. Or, not with me, but across from me. Not close enough to converse with me or comfort me like a friend, but in the vicinity like a protector. Around.
Now he stood in the vestibule with Doug. Doug handed him a bag printed with the name of a local seafood restaurant: Jamaica Joe’s. And I realized in a rush that the policeman was Doug’s older brother, Officer Fox, equally celebrated by the girls in my school for his appropriate name. Doug had brought his brother dinner because his brother had stayed with me long enough to miss a meal.
They spoke with their heads together, and now Doug did look up at me. His brother was telling him what my mom had done.
I looked away again. The doors into the emergency room were white. The walls of the waiting area were white. The floor was square white tiles with gray specks.
I couldn’t stand it. I looked over at the vestibule. The night was black, Officer Fox was dark in his uniform, and Doug shook his black hair out of his green eyes, piercing even at this distance. He said something to his brother and took a step toward me.
Oh God, weren’t things bad enough without Doug here? I’d thought the shock of finding my mom had drained the life out of me for years to come. But my heart still worked, pounding painfully in my chest in anticipation of what Doug would say to make things worse.
The emergency room doors flew open and banged against the walls before folding shut again. My dad stalked toward me, muscular and fit at forty-seven, his handsome features set in fury. I shrank back into the vinyl seat, afraid he was angry at me.
But maybe he was furious at the world for allowing his ex-wife to sink to this low—or better yet, furious with himself. He had realized on the drive here from the baby superstore that he had failed us. Now he would come to our rescue. Yes, there was the matter of Ashley being four months’ pregnant with his baby, but our family would get past that and he would come back to my mom.
He lowered himself into the seat next to mine. His brow was furrowed in anger, but as he opened his thin lips, I was sure he would utter everything I’d longed all summer to hear.
“You keep this to yourself,” he snarled.
I blinked at him. My brain rushed through scenarios, painting him as the hero, and finally gave up. There was no way he could be our hero when his first words to me were a command to keep things quiet. I stammered, “Keep . . . How . . . ?”
“They’re taking her to the loony bin in Fort Walton,” he interrupted me. “With any luck they’ll dope her up, and she’ll be back at work in six weeks. You want to spread it around town that she’s nuts and ruin her career, go right ahead.”
I tried to hear pain in his voice, sorrow at what my mom had done, remorse for the hand he’d had in driving her to this point. Emotions like these must be behind his unsympathetic words.
But all I heard was anger. Embarrassment that his friends and business partners and employees might dish about him and his tabloid-worthy private life. Fear that my mom would lose her job and he’d have to share the proceeds of his water park with two families instead of one.
“Don’t even tell those little twins, you understand me?” He leaned forward and looked straight into my eyes as he said this. It was the closest his body had come to my body since he arrived. He would not hug me. He would only invade my personal space to emphasize that I’d better not spill this secret to my best friends.
Without waiting for my answer, he stood. “Don’t move,” he barked, not looking at me. I assumed he meant me because I was the only other person in the room. He was already walking toward the vestibule.
Oh God, oh God. He might threaten Officer Fox into promising silence, but he had no idea who Doug was, or how little Doug cared about anybody. There was no threat my dad could make to Doug that would shut Doug up if he thought spreading the news about my mother would hurt me. Doug would think he was ruining my life, but really he would be ruining my mother’s—because even if she started to recover from her mental illness, she wouldn’t recover much if she lost her job and the community’s respect.
I saw all this unfolding in front of me as my dad swung open the glass door to the vestibule and leaned into Officer Fox’s personal space, and there wasn’t a thing I could do to stop it from happening. Doug’s green eyes widened as my dad growled at Officer Fox. I couldn’t make out all of what my dad was saying, but when you can kiss your job good-bye floated to me through the glass, I turned away from the black rectangle of night. I stared at the white doors to the emergency room. My thumb found the chip in my fingernail polish and rubbed back and forth across it. I didn’t need to see it to know it was there.
The vestibule door squealed open. “Zoey,” my dad called. “Let’s go.” He stood alone at the threshold to the darkness. He must have chased Doug and Officer Fox away.
I gestured toward the emergency room doors. I thought he would know what I meant by this. When he raised his eyebrows in expectation, I realized I would have to explain even this to him: that I didn’t want to leave her. I opened my mouth and had no words for any of it.
“They won’t let you see her anyway,” he said. “The loony bin won’t let you see her either. They say it’s to protect you from her, and to protect her from you. To remove her from the environment. They’ll let her call you when she’s ready to see you.”
He was saying what I’d been thinking. I’d been blaming myself and hoping that self-blame was natural in these circumstances but ultimately silly. He was telling me it was not silly. Even the mental hospital thought it was my fault that my mother had done this. I still didn’t want to believe any of it, but I felt myself falling down that slope without anything to grab to save myself, except this:
I whispered, “When I first got here, they told me maybe I could talk to the hospital psychologist about what happened?”
“They don’t need you to diagnose your mother,” my dad grumbled.
“I mean”—I swallowed—“for me? To talk about me?”
He huffed out a sigh and leaned one shoulder against the glass wall of the vestibule. “So now you’re crazy too? You’re not going to a psycho-anything. You see how much good it did your mother. They’ll just give you the drugs that you can OD on later. There’s a reason we call them shrinks. Let’s go.”
I stood, only then realizing how sore my back was and how long I must have been sitting in that seat, staring at the closed emergency room doors. I followed my dad through the vestibule and into the night.
We didn’t have far to walk. He had parked his Benz in a handicapped space just outside the door. The backseat was filled with large boxes with laughing babies on the labels. A high chair, a bouncing swing. I slid into the passenger seat and lost myself in an argument inside my own head.
I did not want to believe my dad was right. My mom had not OD’d on medicine a shrink had given her. She had OD’d on sleeping pills her regular doctor had given her. She had never gone to a shrink, probably because of my dad’s opinion of them. I had overheard him saying something like this to her during one of their fights last spring.
I could have pointed this out to him, but he would not have listened to me, any more than he had listened to her. And though normally I might have obsessed about this point of contention and reviewed it over and over, trying to find a way to present it to him that he would understand and accept, tonight it slipped away from me as if captured by the undertow.
In my mind I was back in my mother’s bedroom at our apartment, trying to fix everything. I was the lifeguard, but I couldn’t give her mouth-to-mouth because she was still breathing, and I couldn’t give her CPR because her heart was still beating, faintly. What could I do to help? When the paramedics arrived, I could tell them exactly what she’d taken. Holding my cell phone to my ear with one hand because the 911 dispatcher had ordered me not to hang up, I walked to the bathroom and found her prescription bottle in the trash. Empty.
“Aren’t you going in?” my dad asked.
I looked over at him in the driver’s seat. He thumbed through the messages on his phone. He’d parked the Benz in front of the apartment, between my mother’s hybrid and my battered Bug. He’d just bought Ashley a convertible Beamer. I drove this ancient Bug because he made me use my own money from working at Slide with Clyde for my car, insurance, and gas. He’d told me before that growing up a spoiled brat was what was wrong with my mom.
“Come to think of it,” he said, still scrolling, “I’ll have to help you. You need to get everything. Even after she’s released, the judge won’t let you live with her. You might not be back here for a while.” Behind us, the trunk popped open to receive all my belongings. He stepped out of the Benz.
I followed him into the parking lot. The apartment building was the nicest one in town, which wasn’t saying a lot. Everyone who could afford a house lived in one, which left the apartments for the transients. Mature palms and palmettos softened the lines of the weathered wooden building, but a huge air-conditioning unit filled the late summer night with its drone, and the scent of the community garbage Dumpster wafted from behind a high fence.
My dad noticed the smell too, nostrils flared in distaste as he stood waiting for me at the front of the car. I wondered why he didn’t go ahead to the apartment. Then I remembered he didn’t have a key. I pulled my key chain from my pocket. Still, he didn’t move. He didn’t know which apartment was mine, after I’d lived here for three months.
An instant of anger at him propelled me forward, onto the sidewalk. I inserted the key into my lock. But now I had to turn the key. Now I had to go in.
My dad was watching me. I couldn’t let him see me hesitate. That would make things worse on my mom, to admit to my dad that what she’d done made her less of a person and worthy of his disdain. I shoved inside and flicked on the light.
At least the apartment was extremely clean, the way I’d left it. It didn’t look like an insane person lived here. But viewing it through my dad’s eyes, the apartment building’s standard-issue furniture made it look like she had sunk low. I didn’t want him venturing farther inside, judging.
I faced him. “Why don’t you watch TV while you wait? I won’t be long. Can I get you something to drink?”
He grunted and stepped outside, reaching into his pocket for his cigarettes—a strange habit he’d taken up last May when the water park opened for the season and he hired Ashley.
I watched him until the door closed behind him, then dashed through the apartment, double-checking that it was neat. As I passed back and forth in front of my mother’s desk in the living room, her suicide note stared up at me, the most obvious crazy item: Zoey, I just couldn’t see doing it all another day. I love you. Mom. If I put it in the desk drawer, I would be putting my mom away. I settled for squaring the notepaper perfectly against the corner of the desk. Again.
In the kitchen I peered into the refrigerator. I would take anything perishable to the Dumpster so my mom wouldn’t have a mess to clean up when she came back. I was surprised to find no fruit, no milk. My mom had cleaned it out already.
In the bathroom I selected all my toiletries, leaving my mom’s. In my bedroom I grabbed armfuls of clothing from my closet and my dresser and shoved them into my suitcases. At first I went for the summer clothes only. Then I pulled out a light jacket in case I was still living with my dad when the nights got cool. As I reached the sweater box under my bed, I stared at the cotton and cashmere, heartbeat accelerating into panic, wondering just how long my mom would be gone, and what she would do in the loony bin all that time, and what they would do to her, and whether they would ever let her out, and whether a judge really would keep me from living with her my entire last year of high school.
The smell of smoke startled me. I hoped my dad wasn’t smoking in the apartment, because my mom was allergic. I shoved the sweater box back under my bed, zipped my suitcases, and hauled them into the den.
The apartment door was wide open, letting the air-conditioning out, making room for the warm night air my dad had just smoked. He stood over my mom’s desk, reading her note with his nostrils flared again.
“I’m ready.” I left one suitcase for him and wheeled the other past him and out the door, hoping to distract him from what he’d already seen. He followed me. I pulled the door shut behind me and locked it. When I turned around, he held his hand out.
I looked up at him, puzzled. “The key? Why?”
“Because you’re a teenager,” he said, “and I’m your father.”
I didn’t like the finality of it, or the implication that I was a wild child who couldn’t be trusted with the key to an empty apartment. But a part of me was grateful my dad was taking charge. I wiggled the key off the ring and held it out to him. He didn’t notice. He was looking at the screen on his phone.
He pocketed my key but kept his phone in his hand as he wheeled my suitcase around to the open trunk of the Benz. After hefting both suitcases inside and slamming the trunk, he opened the driver’s door. He nodded toward my Bug. “You’re bringing your car, right? I’ll see you at home.”
Home. He meant the house on the beach. I hadn’t been back there since my mom and I had left. He had joint custody of me, but I figured we saw enough of each other every day at work. Besides, Ashley had gleefully warned me that if I ever did want to visit, the house was a mess. She was having the kitchen remodeled.
I did not want to follow my dad back there right now. I pictured myself in my old bedroom, staring out the window at the ocean I couldn’t see in the black night, wondering what was happening to my mom. I had stared at white emergency room doors for hours tonight. Panic at what she had done rushed through me like pain to my numb fingertips when I warmed them inside on a rare cold winter day. I could not sit in that bedroom tonight, wincing at my heavy heartbeat. There was just so much I could take.
“Actually,” I said, “if you don’t want anyone in town to know about Mom, there’s a beach party I need to go to tonight, the last blowout of the year. If I’m not there, my friends will want to know why.” The Slide with Clyde employees had thrown beach parties all summer. Tonight’s party was special because today, Labor Day, had been our last day of work. Slide with Clyde had closed for the season. This much was true.
It was not true that my friends expected me at the party. They expected me to stay home with my mom. Some days when I came home from work, she seemed energetic as ever. Better, even. But most days she hardly ate dinner, and she went to bed early. In the last couple of weeks she’d complained that she couldn’t sleep. I’d suggested that she didn’t need twelve hours. Her response was to ask for those sleeping pills from her doctor. Now I wondered whether she’d had suicide in mind all along. I had worried about her all summer, so I’d stayed home from my friends’ parties, not that it had done any good.
Tonight I would go.
My dad nodded absently, sinking into the driver’s seat of the Benz.
“I may be out late,” I warned him. “Is that okay? I know I have school tomorrow—”
He closed the door of the Benz and started the engine, already thinking of someone else.
© 2010 Jennifer Echols
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Emotional and expressive, Forget You is another intricately weaved romance from Jennifer Echols. Starting with a simple premise, Echols builds an engaging story that will pull readers through a range of feelings. Although the question of what happened in the time frame Zoey cannot remember is carried throughout the book, Echols adds other elements to keep both mystery and enjoyment high. Zoey is a mildly annoying character, the girl who sleeps with a guy and though he's a playboy, she is sure things are different now. Despite this aspect, Zoey is still a strong, well developed character who holds a perfect blend of maturity and naivety. Her interactions with her dad are heartbreaking and infuriating and much of her actions- including the ones to dub her as annoying- are understandable. She is not a shallow person nor does she lack morals- despite her actions with Brandon. As she continues to investigate the events leading up to the car crash, Zoey encounters both entertaining and surprising events. Echols has done a fantastic job writing an amnesiac character, allowing things to slowly settle back into character and compounding it further by Zoey's determination to keep the full extent of her amnesia a secret. Doug, despite his past, his temper and the intrusiveness with which he suddenly asserts himself into Zoey's life, is an adorable, heartfelt guy. The reader will experience a range of emotions towards this boy, some in response to Zoey and others in response to Echols' beautiful writing and innate ability to profoundly develop her characters. The descriptions used to describe both Doug and many scenes he's in is striking, painting a picture any reader can imagine vividly. Echols makes nothing simple for either character, their battles firing instantly and often cooling just as rapidly. The push and tug of his relationship with Zoey is the epitome is teenage romance, with Zoey not falling instantaneously for the bad boy character but also not turning her nose up at him. Their story is a memorable one with the reader wondering the entire time if they really will end up together. The pace of the plot moves steadily, considering the premise. Watching Doug and Zoey grow is a large part of this book but Echols leaves little time for boredom despite the magnificent character development- development which does take time. Echols shies away from nothing, including an arrange of teenage hormones, lust and emotion throughout the book in various ways but still writing in a way that will appeal to a wide range of audience ages. Certainly a book to be read again and placed at the top of the favorites shelf, Forget You is a breathtaking ride into the world of teenage love and a perfect summer romance. Typical to a hallmark I associate with Jennifer Echols, Forget You holds very strong, memorable, and flawed characters along with an elaborate plot and several twists to keep the reader engaged. Complacency is not a part of Echols' books, rendering Forget You, along with her first romantic drama Going Too Far, must reads.
It's not too often that I read contemporary fiction, but I'm happy that I ventured into the world of Forget You by Jennifer Echols. The story is interesting and engaging, while also being completely believable. The characters really stood out to me because they were realistic and heartfelt. Zoey is easy to relate to and more than easy to empathize with, given her circumstances with her loony bin mom and her ass of a dad. Echols tackles this story with honesty and the shows the reality of teenage life. Zoey's life isn't perfect and she's far from perfect herself. In a time when her family is falling apart, Zoey strives to present herself with the perfect life. She starts out with both feet firmly planted on the ground, but after an unexpected pregnancy (her dad knocks up his employee), a divorce (lots of yelling), and a suicide attempt (her mom is all kinds of messed up post-divorce) Zoey's firmly planted feet begin to shift and the book explores the raw emotions that can come with all of that. In the aftermath of the divorce, Zoey does what many teens would do, she becomes more reckless. She becomes more sexual and more interested in the thrills of a sexual relationship. When Zoey wakes up the morning after a car accident to find 'not her boyfriend' Doug checking in on her all lovey dovey like, the story really takes off. What happened the night of the accident that caused Zoey to not be with her boyfriend Brandon? And why is Doug all of a sudden being nice to her? This is where the writing and the characterizations really shine. Zoey's at a loss as to what happened to her and bad boy Doug seems to be the only person who knows the truth. Their relationship and the slowly unraveling mystery about that night had me yearning for more. The chemistry between Doug and Zoey is undeniable and the sexual tension was incredibly well-written. Doug could have easily been just the sexy bad boy, but Echols made me love him with his depth and his personality. Oh, and he's gorgeous and has the most incredible eyes. That helps too. The realization about that forgotten night forces Zoey to really take a look at her life, at herself, at the people around her, and grow up a little. She goes through a lot in such a short amount of time and by the end, she's better because of it. All of that makes the book sound heavy, but it's not really. Forget You is a fast, addicting read that gives us the reality of teens with sex, lust, and a lot of sarcasm. I loved it. Opening line: Every strong swimmer has a story about nearly drowning. ~ pg. 1 Favorite line(s): He frowned at me. "Why haven't you been turning the world upside down looking for your real diamond earrings?" I shrugged. "I figured they'd turn up. Like my virginity." ~ pg. 174
This book was amazing. I loved every minute reading this
Forget You was an actual, intense and memorable novel. Jennifer Echols took the subject of love and spun it into a web of drama and undeniable chemistry. Zoey, the female protagonist, was a strong, down to earth character. At times, a bit naive yet unique in her own way. I automatically sympathized with her pain of having a mother on the verge on insanity and a father who was a mean, selfish jerk. I felt like her decision to go "parking" with her so called best friend, Brandon was caused by her hidden pain. Mentally, she just needed someone to truly care about her. Luckily for her and me, after her accident, Doug made a stronger appearance in her life. At first, Doug was portrayed like this cold, heartless person, when in reality he was hysterically entertaining and a sweetheart. She wanted nothing more than to get away from him. But, his determination and constant support creeped into her everyday routine. Their were moments in this book where it felt like an emotional roller coaster. The physicality was raw and relatable. Zoey's sense of longing and bad judgment on what's really good for her was apparent. Besides, the perfectly developed characters, Jennifer created a plot that was full of real-life situations. I must warn my young readers that the author didn't shy away from presenting moments of sex, masturbation and drinking. Personally, I respected the fact that this YA novel expressed practical incidents. It does happen every day amongst some teens and young adults. I admired Jennifer's tasteful way of pushing the envelope with her characters and can't wait to see what other projects she comes out with. Overall, a great book, with an ending that will warm your heart. I know some people don't like seeing sex in YA but, I recommend you look passed that and into a well-written story. :)
This book is awesome! It is one of the best books i have read in a very long time. I suggest every teen girl read this!
Strong characters, amazing storyline... what wasn't to like? This was the first of Ms. Echols books I read and I was pleasantly surprised. The moment I finished it, I went in search of other titles by her. "Forget You" has made it into my "keeper" pile.
Oh Gosh this was a good one! Zoey seemed to project her self imperfections in a negative way. Despite her oh so perfect Outer shell that most people see. She doesn't want anyone to see the side where her mother has gone insane and her father could careless about her and her mother since he was having an affair and now is marrying little 24 yr old trophy wife. Zoey decided to lose her virginity to Brandon one of her best guy friends. She seems to create some weird fake yet not fake relationship with him. The whole time in denial that he isn't what she needs. You can't make someone into something they aren't. After finding her mother in a suicide attempt. Zoey does what she knows best, destruction. Fast forward through the night Zoey wakes up not really remembering what happened that night only a few bits and pieces. Pieces that include Doug. She then has to pretend that she remembers everything that has happened. So when Doug shows up acting like the are together. Zoey doesn't know what to do. What really happened? I love Forget You. Jennifer Echols is amazing! Forget You has some zing. I would recommend this to anyone. Though there is a few steamy scenes. You need to get this one. Forget You is going to be one of the greats of 2010. hehe atleast to me :)
After days full of drama for Zoey she is struggling to stay strong. With her father problems spread everywhere and her mother's nervous breakdown over it, Zoey can't help but feel trapped. Trapped into the perfect daughter, doing everything she can to help matters. Zoey made some unwise decisions with Brandon leading her to assume other things. Then she starts speaking to Doug. A kid who has had it rough he whole life and hates Zoey. She last saw him at the football game looking loath at her and then the next morning he is all sweet. Zoey totalled her car in a car accident, that left her with amnesia. She doesn't remember what happen the night before. After her father threatens her, she lies about remembering the night before and sets off to seek her own answers as to what really happen that night. *SPOILER WARNING* This book started off already with major drama. I was immediately sucked into the whirlwind of it and felt bad for her. Her father cheats on her mother and whats worse he gets the girl pregnant. Zoey works for her father who owns a very popular water park and so now it is buzzing all of the place. Zoey feels horrible after what happen and made some unwise decisions. Zoey's mother could not take the stress of it all so she attempted suicide. Zoey walks in to find her mother is going to thankfully make it. Okay let me just say that I absolutely hated the father. He get the girl pregnant, Zoey and her mother leave the house moving into the apartment and then he move the girl in there with him. Whats worse is that the father is angry with Zoey after her mother's apparent suicide. Instead of consoling her at the hospital he walks in upset, yelling at her not to say a word of it to anyone. Poor Zoey is in such shock, she doesn't even know what to say. It's no wonder Zoey acted the way that she acted. He dad was a jerk. Then after Zoey's car accident, he blames her again, threatening that there really better be something wrong with her head if he is going to miss his honeymoon, if so he was going to put in the loony bin with her mom. Right there, my jaw drop. First off how can you say such a thing to your own daughter. This father was thinking of no one but himself. UGH!!! This book was great drama. Watching it unfold was something uncanny. I connected with Zoey on a very personal level. I too grew up with a father somewhat like that. He has a business and reputation to keep. He of course has girlfriends that are 24 yrs or younger and I am expected to treat them as such. Hello! I am just 25! They can be my freaking sister!!! Also even though my father has money and spends it on his girlfriend like there is no tomorrow, I have to work to earn my keep because he wants to teach me repsonablility. Believe me that is the last thing I learn from him. If you like a good book with lots of drama and gasping then this book is for you. For me is was personal and touching. I did connect with Zoey on many levels and felt her anger and pain. I can truly say that this is something that happen in real life's because it happen in mine. There was some curse words and some sexual scenes. I recommend for older teens. (18+)
The book was definitely worth the read. The plot deserves five stars. The story was great. There was no lulls, it keeps you on the edge of your seat. And although it had romance in it, the romance wasnt ridiculously over-done. It was just the right amount mixed in with the other elements of the plot. There are few sex scenes, and they are short, and not dirty. It was great to read a story with romance that wasnt disgusting. there are also several conflicts going on that adds to suspense. I have fallen in love with this book. As for the characters, they were well written. Doug in honestly my favorite fictional character ever. I fell in love with this boy! His character was amazing! The main character, Zoey, is also a great character. The reason i had to give the book four instead of five stas is the actual writting itself. There were some important details missing that the editor or someone should have fixed. Theres just simply not enough time spent on zoey's time with brandon before they hooked up to make her trust in him believable. This missing information did take away from the story a little because you too busy being annoyed by zoey to stay connected to her character the way a readed needs too. Also, theres scenes that lack some detail so they can be a bit unclear. I was disappointed to see a story i so much loved being cheated out of its full potential becauae of its writting. All in all, the story was great. The small flaws are ignorable. I absolutely adorws the story. I do recommend this book!!!! (Although i feel obligated go say for ages 15 and up) if youre considering this book, dont let the reviews sway your choice. This book will not disappoint!!!!
I thought that this book was a steal! It was a free read so I was a bit skeptical but I really enjoyed it. It is definitely geared for a more mature audience that can look past certain parts and just enjoy the book :) .. It is an easy read and I too finished it in about a day; definitely worth downloading.
i heart stoping, jaw droping phenomenon. Highly Recommended
i loved this book. i thought that the characters were very relatable. it was good from start to end
there was alot of cursing but other than that, best book ever!
I LOVED IT! I've read better, but it grabbed my attention. The plot and the romance of the story made sense. I read it in two days. I never put it down. It was one book I might forget, but life makes some sort of sense.
Its a really great love story! I cannot get this book out of my head! I've been thinking about it! I LOVE IT! have fun reading(:
I LOVE THIS BOOK! I've read it 7 times now and about to start my 8th.. Such a great book!
Deffinately in my top 10! I loved it, it had me captured from the first chapter! A definite must read!
this book was so great. I Loved it. it was Amazing :)
My main problem with this book was the offensive ways major issues were handled, specifically mental health. Throughout the book, all of the characters refer to Zoeys mom as 'crazy' and the hospital where she is getting treatment for her legitimate problem a 'loony bin'. It came off as ignorant. This type of unrealistic and offensive language is dangerous, especially in a young adult book. The book would have been much better (and maybe even worth the unsatisfying read) if it had handled this issue with sensitivity, as well as the other issues it faced such as abuse and neglect.
WOW, WOW, WOW. LOVE IT! EVERY TIME! This was the first book of Jennifer's that I read and since the first time reading it, that's right I said it...I've read it more than once. After reading it that first time, I then went and read ALL BUT TWO of Jennifer's other books. And I loved them all! This one happens to be my favorite though! Don't get me wrong, all of her stories are successful, wonderful, and I love them. However, this one is still my favorite! Doug and Zoey just have that SOMETHING between them! The chemistry is unbelievable! She is able to take the characters and truly write from their minds. Her stories are so full of REAL emotion! Whether it is the ways in which she is able to capture their different emotions or even the finesse use of the sexual tension. She portrayed things very well and realistic. Whether it was family issues, parties, teenage hook-ups, those tension moments, or simply how Zoey was confused within it all, it goes on and on. Jennifer is a phenomenal author! She steps on the bounds that not many authors do. Making the reader feel something! There were times when I was reading that I really felt things and could forget I was reading. Being tied to the characters and their story! She has become one of my favorite authors and I intend to read those last two books of hers, as well as, anything else she intends to write for us in the future!!! Thank you for all the great stories!
Hated this book!!!!!! Throughout the whole entire book, Zoey just kept on telling Doug that she was with Brandon, but would almost go to third base with Doug. I couldn't stand that, plus I just felt like Zoey complained that she was a good listener and there for everyone, but when the twins came and talked to her she would hardly listen. Another thing that I hated about this book was that it was choppy. Ms. Echols is probably a good writer, but she did no go into details and when she needed to start a new chapter to help explain things she didn't. Lastly, I hated that Zoey just forgave Doug for all that he did, the Debt he made???? Hello!!!!!! No sane person would forgive him last fast. As you see, I really did not like this book so don't waste your money on it.
This book was very well written. I enjoyed every minute of reading this book and am now officially a Jennifer Echols fan. Does the book involve some sex talk? Yes, but it is not "raunchy". When you are reading books by this author, you can't be a prude about it all. This book is about teenagers so, therefore, they have hormones and are hungry for sex. However, there is an actual love story behind Zoey and Doug that has been there since 7th grade. Way before sex was involved. I would definitely recommend this book to teens probably 15 and up. They learn about all of this in sex education anyway, so I don't see a point in recommending it to only 18 year olds and up. And as a plus society is changing and kids don't even get to sex education before they learn about these things. Bottom line, it is a VERY good book to read.
The stars say it all!!!!!!!!!!!
I've seen this book many times in the store but i wasn't sure about it. I'm so glad i finally got it! This book grabs your attention and doesn't let go until the last word is read. The mystery of what happened that night is great, though i did see part of it coming. This is a great summer read!
Overall the book was okay. There were some parts that were great..... excellent with detail, other wise i had to force my self to read the book... some of it was kinda of confusing so i didn't get it that much. I'm not saying don't read this book i'm saying maybe read a couple of pages in before you determine weather you like it or not.