Happy to be Alive, Because by Chelsea Jacobs
From the back cover:
Avery is a seventeen-year-old girl whose reality has just been shattered by the death of her mother. Feeling a desperate need to flee from what has become her life, she follows a travel plan mean for her mom and her that leads her to the little beach town where her mom grew up.
It's there that she meets a group of three adventurous friends who adopt her into their circle, allowing her to experience a summer she never thought would be possible after suffering such a great loss. Unfortunately, her summer full of experiences threatens to end abruptly when she realizes that one of the three has a secret that causes her to question everything about the new life she has been building.
Avery must learn to balance her grief and her desire for a future in order to achieve her mother's final wish for her: That she would be happy to be alive.
Unfortunately I could tell from the first chapter that this was a self-published book. I wanted to like it but the writing was just not good. The story idea is a good one, the journaling is a beautiful idea. The way it was written is not. The dialogue was uninteresting and hard to read. I didn't make it through the entire book and ended up skimming it just to see how it all ended. The "big secret" wasn't that big.
Since this is YA fiction I do think that the younger audience will enjoy it more than an adult reader. I can see junior-high girls really liking this book.
For YA fiction I prefer Jenny B. Jones and Melody Carlson.
This book was provided for review by LitFuse.