Thursday, February 2, 2012

Book Review: In Too Deep by Amanda Grace

SUMMARY: I never meant for anyone to get hurt. All I wanted to do that night was make a play for Carter Wellesley. His heartless rejection was mortifying, but people got the wrong idea when they saw me leaving his bedroom, crying. That's how rumors of rape started. 

Now girls at school are pouring out their sympathy to me. Guys too. But not everyone's on my side. The school has become a war zone and the threats are getting scary. What began as poetic justice has morphed into something bigger--forcing me to make a terrible choice.


This one has a different kind of intensity to it, centered around an out of control feeling that is hard to pinpoint in any given moment but is so prevalent and breaking when looked at overall. Sam is a little broken at the start, in love with her best friend and wanting to try to nudge him into noticing her, yet also doesn't have too many friends beyond him and her home life is far from perfect. When her plan for attention goes very wrong, she is just as lost and confused over how to fix things with Nick as she is trying to figure out a way to tell everyone it was all one big misunderstanding. She's a great character to get behind, having plenty of wit and fun to her, even if it's dampened by the circumstances, and her overall arc has a smooth flow to it.

My biggest complaint about this book centers around the ending, where I felt as though one specific character's reaction to everything was a bit overblown, making it seems as though things ended that way in an effort to intentionally and further punish Sam than anything else. Truthfully, if this character was as great as everyone said, held up on a pedestal by many, the unforgiving and overly stubborn response completely knocks them off in my eyes, yet that wasn't really portrayed in the book by any of the characters. Add in the fact that there was that stubbornness in other areas, sometimes even adding to the constant out of control feeling Sam felt and her inability to tell the truth, and it the specific subplot leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

Regardless of that, however, the rest of the ending is poignant and beautifully done, leaving readers to think. There is a strong connection between readers and Sam, and Grace has made her a very relatable and realistic character. Fantastically written, heavy in voice and emotionally intense throughout, this one is addicting and grabbing. Hitting just a bit on a different way to look at date rape, throwing a new kind of question of victim into this particular circumstance, and giving voice to how easily things can be misconstrued and blown out of proportion, Grace has tackled a tough subject with a certain finesse.

Source: ARC received from publisher in exchange for an honest review 
Reading level: Ages 12 and up 
Paperback: 240 pages 
Publisher: Flux
Publication Date: February 8, 2012


  1. Thanks for the review - I remember hearing about this book awhile ago, but had almost forgotten about it. Sounds interesting.

  2. Ever since I've started seeing reviews of this, I've wanted to read it. It sounds so different. I'm not always a huge fan of stories written for the ending, but I'm willing to give this one a try.

  3. While I applaude Ms. Grace for tackling such a sensitive subject, I don't think Sam is a protagonist I could find myself rooting for. If all it takes is telling the truth to keep someone from being labeled a rapist, then the fact that she doesn't automatically makes me dislike her as a main character. Rape allegations are very serious and will follow someone throughout their life, so I kinda get angry whenever I hear/read about someone "crying rape" just to get petty revenge.