Brian's Reviews > Jersey Angel

Jersey Angel by Beth Ann Bauman
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's review
Feb 06, 2012

really liked it
Read in February, 2012

Angel at 17 is not an angel in any conventional sense. She cheats with her friend’s boyfriend, she stays out really late, she’s not interested in school, and she desperately wants her old boyfriend back, although she doesn’t understand why he wants more than just uncommitted sex from their relationship.

Yet she is also kind. Sexually free she does a kindness to a nerdy boy, she tries to ease the pain of a friend who has a devastating loss, she takes her own losses without exploding into teenage anger, and she cares about her younger siblings and step-siblings. She doesn’t have it easy - her mother is mostly absent and self-involved, her divorced father too busy with his new family, her stepfather too New- Age to be for her to be close to.

She’s is on her own, not only trying to figure out her future, but also simply finding what makes her happy. She never really does find herself in the book, although she does make some decisions about her future. I liked that the book did not come to a ‘happy’ conventionally redeeming resolution.

As I started reading this book, I was not attracted to her, but I wound up rooting for her to find her way. Angel becomes more complex as the story unfolds. Prospective readers should be aware that the book contains adult language and situations - a lot. But in truth, the sexually explicit scenes were among my favorites, written very honestly and tenderly.
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