Oh, Jess. She’s always been too good at hiding from her problems. She’s afraid that she and Bastian may act on their shared attraction, so she decamps to Pineville for the 4th and stays. And stays. And stays, hiding in Pineville, even though she has a job to get back to and no real desire to be in Pineville.
But at least we get another glimpse at what our favorite Pineville residents have been up to—her mom and dad sold their house, Bridget transferred to NYU, and Sara looks like a Slim Jim. Jess’s trip to Tiki Tiki Tonga with Bridget and Percy is everything I want out of trip home to Pineville. I love her description, because the only thing more horrifying than the Rain Forest Café is imagining it as a club. And just to confirm: Scotty is still the worst. I know we think Jess needs to get laid, but not Scotty—never Scotty. Thankfully that vision, while graphic, was fleeting.
And in July’s penultimate entry, we finally find out what’s up with Marcus. It’s utterly heartbreaking that Jessica thinks that maybe, just maybe, Marcus could be hiding out in Pineville too. Only Marcus could go from an obscure Buddhist college to a strangely prestigious dude ranch. But let’s take a moment to consider MARCUS THE LIBRARIAN! How did I forget that Marcus gets to be both junior farmer and librarian at his dude ranch college? And thank you Mrs. Flutie for shaking Jess out of her Pineville funk.
It’s not a secret that both Anna and I are fans of Rainbow Rowell’s first YA novel, Eleanor and Park. Last week I read (and loved) her latest novel, Fangirl. Cath and her twin sister Wren start college with very different goals. Wren wants to party and insists that they live separate lives. Cath just wants to keep writing fanfic about Simon and Baz and make sure that they’re dad can keep it together on his own. This book totally delivers the emotional gut punches and swoony romance we’ve come to expect from Rainbow. Rowell.