Exposed is a fascinating novel about a situation that I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. Kate and Lizzie have been best friends forever. Once a month they have a Saturday Night Slumber, and never miss this. At one Saturday Night Slumber, Lizzie says things about Kate’s boyfriend that maybe she shouldn’t have, and they end up sleeping separately with Kate downstairs and Lizzie upstairs. After that Kate won’t have anything to do with Lizzie, no matter how much Lizzie apologizes.
Eventually, Kate tells Lizzie that Lizzie’s brother, Mike, raped her at Lizzie’s house that night. Of course Mike flatly denies that it was rape. So begins a story that the reader knows has no possibility of a happy ending.
Lizzie has aspirations of being a photographer and is assembling a portfolio to send to colleges. With this event, she has lost her best friend, her brother, and her will to take photographs. Her entire life has changed. She is treated differently at school and has difficulty with her boyfriend, Brian.
I can’t tell you how the book ends, but as I said, I don’t think it’s possible to make everyone happy, and of course they aren’t. But there is hope and some healing is taking place.
The book is written in free verse, very sparse, but everything that needs to be said, is said. I’m not a big fan of free verse, but since I admire Ellen Hopkins’ books, I’ve been willing to give others a try, and Kimberly Marcus does an excellent job with this format.
Give this to teens, particularly girls, who like realistic, edgy books. Also, fans of Ellen Hopkins or other free verse novels. It’s a very quick read—free verse and around 250 pages, so reluctant readers might enjoy this one.
Published by Random House, February 22, 2011
ARC obtained from Random Buzzers (Thanks!!)
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