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You, Maybe: The Profound Asymmetry of Love in High School

You, Maybe: The Profound Asymmetry of Love in High School

3.2 62
by Rachel Vail

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Josie is independent and fierce. She may flirt with boys or kiss them, but it doesn't mean anything, not even with Michael, who's more like a friend-with-benefits. So how can she explain what happens when Carson Gold goes after her? Carson Gold, the hottest senior, the one everyone secretly watches. . . .

Maybe it's the same thing that causes all the girls to


Josie is independent and fierce. She may flirt with boys or kiss them, but it doesn't mean anything, not even with Michael, who's more like a friend-with-benefits. So how can she explain what happens when Carson Gold goes after her? Carson Gold, the hottest senior, the one everyone secretly watches. . . .

Maybe it's the same thing that causes all the girls to stare as he walks by. Or maybe it's something between them, something just he and Josie share.

Could you resist?

It's too much, when love finds you and pulls you under. It's too much, even for Josie.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Josie is a smart, feisty, and not-so-conventional teenager. Love? Josie figures you hook up and move on. But when Carson Gold, the hottest senior guy in high school, makes his move, Josie's ideas about romance change. She works so hard to become someone that Carson could love, she seems to lose sight of who she really is. "Tell me what you want me to do. Anything. I'll do it, Carson." But does Carson really love her (he's already told her that love is a brat) or is he just using her to get back at Emelina? An entertaining story that will keep girls turning the pages to follow the ups and downs and ins and outs of Josie's high school love story. Includes some discreet descriptions of making out or hooking up; near the end of the book, teens go off to a mountain cabin (chaperoned by grandparents who seem to be unaware of the kids after bedtime behavior) where more intimate relations are implied. 2006, HarperCollins, and Ages 13 to 16.
—Anita Barnes Lowen
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up-Josie is an independent, self-assured sophomore who doesn't care what anyone thinks about her-until Carson Gold, senior and hottest guy around, suddenly shows an interest. Neither Josie nor her best friends quite understand why she tentatively indulges his attention. At first, she makes out with both Carson and Michael, her neighbor and longtime best friend, following her own philosophy of not getting too involved with one person. Though her friends discourage the relationship, pointing to Carson's fame as a heartbreaker, Josie still finds herself falling for him and his lifestyle. She begins to dress to impress and alters her behavior to fit in with "the Beautiful People." Pleased to see Josie taking an interest in her appearance, and also impressed by Carson, her mother approves Josie's request to go on a trip with him and his friends. Several traumatic events during the weekend lead Josie to rediscover what is really important to her. Ultimately, she proves that she is the bright, secure person her friends have always admired. Throughout her first-person narrative, confident vs. insecure Josie argues with herself about all of her relationships, giving readers a true glimpse of her confusion. Her friends are realistically portrayed and their reactions to her romance add to the story's development. Josie shows what often happens to a smart, young woman when a charismatic young man starts paying attention to her. This cautionary tale begs to be read by girls everywhere, before, during, and after they fall in love.-Linda L. Plevak, Saint Mary's Hall, San Antonio, TX Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Sophomore Josie narrates: She has two best friends, two parents who care about her in an absentminded way and Michael, whom she's known since forever, whom she writes songs with and whom she kisses absentmindedly on a regular basis. She's also Tallulah, a clown who does kids parties-and very well, too. When Carson, the absolute pinnacle of gorgeousness and a senior to boot, pursues her, she's resistant, then flattered, then downright overcome by the sweetness of his kisses and how cool it is to be his. He's also manipulative and mean, and readers see the process unfold as Josie does. Josie abandons her clown gig, Michael on his birthday and almost her virginity to Carson, but he's transparently using her to get an old girlfriend back, and Josie finds her own self just in time. There are some great lines here, a terrific voice and some thoughtful ideas about love and friendship. (Fiction. YA)

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HarperCollins Publishers
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You, Maybe
The Profound Asymmetry of Love in High SchoolChapter One

As soon as we rounded the corner I realized it was a mistake to crash, but by then it was too late to stop. A lot of the Beautiful People were at the party, even on the front lawn. Clearly not our crowd. Zandra, Tru, and I squeezed past the couple on the front porch, pretending not to notice who it was: Carson Gold, the hottest senior guy, shaking his head at a gorgeous girl who was trying not to cry. I rolled my eyes at Zandra after we were clear. "Another one down," I whispered. She laughed and shoved me forward. I stumbled over the threshold, into the party.

We shouldered our way through the crowd, pretending we were looking for someone. As we were passing a couch in the living room, a couple who'd been making out on it stood up and rushed away, apparently in search of a room. Zandra, Tru, and I plopped down instantly in their space, next to another making-out pair. We were wedged in pretty tight, with Tru's skinny thigh in its short skirt pressed against the hip of the oblivious girl beside her, but we smiled at one another triumphantly: We had scored seats. We sat back, pulled off our mittens, unzipped our jackets, and looked around.

Parties are our favorite spectator sport.

Not much was going on. We shifted positions and kept scoping.

"So," Tru started. "What would you say is the single most important thing?"

"In life?" I asked. "No contest. Chocolate."

"Books," Tru countered.

"True love," Zandra said. "Do you think Emelina is here?"

"No way," Tru said. "She never goes to parties where Carson will be."

"Ugh," I groaned. "This iswhy I vote for chocolate. It's yours, it's wonderful, you gobble it up, it's gone. Good-bye. Maybe you feel a little guilty, but at least chocolate doesn't hang around at parties you want to go to. You know?" Their obsession with Carson Gold was beyond me. I mean, sure, he's gorgeous, in a generic all-American way. And even I watched sometimes last year when he and Emelina Lee glided through the halls, holding hands. They whispered to each other in corners and kissed in the stairwells. But then Emelina got accepted to Princeton early and when she went to visit for the special weekend, she fell in love with a college boy. She dumped Carson that Monday morning in the school parking lot. Nobody could believe it, least of all Carson. The rumor shot around that he had almost punched her, but at the last second punched his new car instead. Zandra and Tru dragged me out to the parking lot during lunch later that week in search of his white Mazda, to check. Sure enough, there it was, a dent right on the roof near the passenger door: proof. My two best friends were practically electrified with the passion of that. What can I say? I'm a pacifist. Punching your own car seems pretty stupid to me.

"Think he was dumping that girl on the steps?" Tru asked.

"Clearly," said Zandra. "He's still in love with Emelina, everybody knows it."

Tru nodded solemnly.

"Gag," I said.

"You don't understand romance, Josie," Tru said. She's been studying. She's read forty-seven romance novels, as research. Tru skipped first grade so she's a year younger than me and Zandra, and she looks about ten, especially with her braces and wire-rimmed glasses. She is trying to be less of a bookworm this winter, but I think her pursuit of romance is stressing her out way more than advanced calculus ever has. We like her just fine as she is, all serious and sincere and intense. But it's hard to convince her to stop trying to be less herself; she's on a mission.

"Neither does Carson Gold, apparently," I pointed out.

"Just because he's hooked up with half the senior girls doesn't mean his heart has healed," whispered Zandra. "Sometimes sluttiness is a sign of intense longing."

"Yeah?" I asked her.

"Trying out a new rationalization. What do you think?"

"Pretty good," I said.

Zandra is the opposite of Tru in a lot of ways — she's curvy where Tru is tiny, outrageous where Tru is timid. Zandra's hair has not been its natural color since elementary school, she's more street smart than academic, she has seven piercings, and as for experience with guys, well, Zandra has made out with a lot of guys, but never has had a boyfriend. As tough as she looks, what she really wants is to fall in love.

"Think about the way he used to look at her," Zandra whispered to Tru. "Have you ever seen anything so romantic?"

Tru leaned forward to talk around me. "I know — as if he wanted to swallow her down whole."

"Ew," I said, sitting up behind them. "Like an oyster?"

Tru and Zandra clutched my arms as Carson Gold himself stalked into the room and stopped right in front of us. Sunk into the couch, our heads came up to about his hip. The girl from the porch flung herself at him, her arms grabbing him from behind.

"But I love you, Carson!" she pleaded. "I thought you loved me!"

What a nightmare. We sunk deeper into the back cushions to watch.

"Don't do this," he murmured, gently disentangling himself from her tentacle-arms.


"Shh." He looked at her with soft pity, not like he wanted to swallow her whole.

Her hands went to her hair and she pulled, squeezing her eyes tight. A groan escaped from deep in her throat. I was so embarrassed for her I had to look away. I pulled my cell phone out of my bag, for something to look at, and text messaged my friend Michael:


The girl plowed through the crowd like a guided missile toward the door, and I heard Carson Gold exhale above us. I kept my eyes on my phone, as my friends stiffened on either side of me. I was trying to work up some pity for the poor girl. I couldn't. I mean, she knew who she was dealing with, right? So why make a jerk of yourself over him? Or over any boy? Was he supposed to act like he was married to her just because they'd fooled around once or twice? Please, we're in high school. Hook up and move on.

Zandra and Tru both suddenly squeezed my arms tighter.


"He looked at you," Zandra whispered fiercely.


Michael texted me back:


"He totally did," Tru whispered, nodding. "Right at you."

"Lucky me," I said. "You guys want to go to Michael's instead?"

"Are they playing craps?" Tru asked. When I nodded, she grinned. Tru's a champ at shooting craps, we recently discovered. She says it all boils down to figuring out what's most likely to happen, and something about how many ways there are to make eight.

We hoisted ourselves off the couch. "I'll call my dad," Tru offered, rummaging through her bag for her cell as we headed toward the door. "He'll be psyched. He got me a new book on probability this week."

On the way to the door we passed this guy Andrew, a junior I had hooked up with a while ago. He and I checked each other out, considering a rematch.

"Josie," Tru called from the door. "Come on!"

I shrugged at Andrew and spun around, right into Carson Gold.

"Ow," he said.

"Right back at you," I answered.

I went around him and caught up with my crazy friends, who spent the whole ride over to Michael's deconstructing the multiple possible meanings of "Ow" and envying my encounter with the great Carson Gold. Luckily, once we got to Michael's we started rolling dice, which moved us on to more interesting subjects like whether or not luck actually exists.

You, Maybe
The Profound Asymmetry of Love in High School
. Copyright (c) by Rachel Vail . Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Meet the Author

Rachel Vail is the award-winning author of the critically acclaimed novels If We Kiss and Lucky, Gorgeous, and Brilliant (the Avery sisters trilogy) and more than a dozen other novels for young teens, including the Friendship Ring series. Rachel has also written many beloved picture books, including Piggy Bunny and Sometimes I'm Bombaloo, and two hit novels for elementary school kids, Justin Case: School, Drool, and Other Daily Disasters; and Justin Case: Shells, Smells, and the Horrible Flip-Flops of Doom. Rachel lives in New York City with her husband and their two sons.

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You, Maybe: The Profound Asymmetry of Love in High School 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 62 reviews.
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
YOU, MAYBE is a great book about high school romance. This book really captures how romance in high school can be confusing and heartbreaking, but can also be fun. This book is a page-turner; it keeps you wondering what could possibly happen next.

Josie is a fifteen-year-old girl who is very independent and has never wanted to be anybody's girlfriend. She believes that when you become a couple, you yourself are only half of something and not whole. She's just a regular kid who never understood why they say that these are the best years of your life.

Josie is living her regular life; going to school, trying to make some extra money, hanging out with her friends, and everything else a regular teenager would do. Josie loved hanging out with her best guy friend, Michael. Everything was fine between Josie and her friends. But what happens when she starts to think that she might be falling in love with Carson, a BP (beautiful person), the kind of person she had always hated? What happens when Carson starts to notice her? Carson had previously had a hard time when his first love, Emelina, got accepted to college early and fell in love with an older college boy. Will Carson learn to love Josie and give up on Emelina? And what will happen when a tragic event happens? Will Carson love Josie or break her heart?

To answer all these questions, read this great book.
ENSbookworm10 More than 1 year ago
I started this book just for fun. I'm not into many sappy love stories but I dared myself anyways and let me just say what a laugh this was. I felt so embarrased for Josie. A smart young girl in the beginning with her own morals and not a care in the world about how others viewed her. I liked her all up until she "fell in love" with Carson. He was a jerk and any smart girl should and could see straight through him. If you want a cliche laugh on high school love then be my guest and read this. If you think the book is absolutely amazing then more power to ya. I prefer more depth. Josie should have just stuck with Michael. She became the girl that she didn't want to be all for some senior who is nothing more then self-centered, selfished, and a "BRAT". I recomend this for laughs only, nothing serious. Happy Readings. c[:
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought this book was amazing!! OK, yea it did end in a bad way, but seriously. The rest of the book was totally amazing. It teaches us teens that love doesn't always go our way. All in all, I thought it was an amazing book. I couldn't put it down!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I would've given this book 5 stars, but the ending was awful! I finished this book in a day and it was a zings right up until to the last chapter! I hope she decides to write a sequel!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What happened at the end??? Everybody says its sooooo terrible BUT CAN SOMEONE PLEASE EXPLAIN TO ME WHAT HAPPENED AT THE END??!?!!? thx
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ive always loved rachel vails books. This one caught my eye though because of the way the summary is on the back. When i bought this book off of amazon i read it shortly after that and i think its one of her best personally
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ima go to res 18 bye
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I finished in one one daym yeah i coouldnt put the nook ( yes nook got it for my b day.) Until of course the ending . I thought it was gonna end with her dating her friend Michael. Im almost positive thats what everyone thought. Also that Carson is a complete jerk. I thought she would have gone inside eat lunch with her friends have Michael come up. And have him say " i know hiw to make you feel better." Josie replying with yeah? Then he kissess her end of story. Done they love eachotther. End of story. Personaly i like my ending a whole lot better.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
this is the worst book ever. when i first read what it was about, i was excited to read it. when i got a few chapters in, i started to loose interest and at the end i was really disapointed. i dont recomend this.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I found the title a little cheesy but really cute so I picked it up. I was really excited to read it too. However, after about 2-3 chapters, it was kind of boring. Plus, I don't really like the main characters personality either. It was a big disappointment. It is good for a light hearted read, really short and can be easily finished.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is so amazing ! I cant wait to read it again. Its exciting and it will make you want to turn the pages over and over again until you finish it (:
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
yo_mariah46 More than 1 year ago
when i first decided to read the book i was excited, though i did not like the cheesy cover. i laughed out loud many times while reading this book and finished it in five quick hours. i was ok with the ending but what really bothered me was there was no explanation to carsons feelings. as a reader we sometimes need closure and understanding(; .and i felt like the author just ended it, not caring to give us some insight as to why. otherwise it was a good book, i didnt mind the unhappy ending at all. in fact it would have been even worse if it had a "happy ending".
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FreakyROMANTIC More than 1 year ago
this book is jacked up.i dont know about you but i am a sucker for a happy ending and this was the total opposite. First she has no life with boys then at the end she is screaming at Carson that he said he loved her just like all the other girls. And the weird and obnoxious "kissing" with her guy best friend who supposedley doesnt like her. MESSED UP!!!If you pick it up immeadiately put it back down. TERRIBLE! Down below are some actual GOOD books, by this author!!
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