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The Lucky Kind


The Lucky Kind

"My girlfriend has thick brown hair and skinny white legs and a dark brown freckle hidden behind her right knee. Every weekday morning she meets Stevie and me, and together we lean against the pizza place and watch the underclassmen and feel infinitely superior. Then Stevie goes inside, and Eden and I sneak around the corner and kiss until our lips are sore, or until we realize that we're going to be late for class."

To an outsider, Nick might seem like the type of guy who would never stand a chance with a girl like Eden Reiss. Nick is a little socially awkward and definitely not smooth with girls. His approach is unrefined, and he tends to be rather blunt, while Eden is graceful, highly intelligent, and a legendary, pure beauty. Just looking at her seems to make Nick feel emotional and outclassed. Yet while his advances were openly clumsy and nerdy in those first days of dating, somehow the stars aligned. Through some lucky turn of fate, Eden became his. From their first conversation, her eyes were somehow opened to his values; she recognized and loved the qualities unique to Nick.

Eden and Nick were immediately crazy about each other and never once measured the other against anyone else. They possess the gift of seeing the other for who they really are and, without a doubt, have found real love. Even in youth and inexperience, this is the kind of love that is intensely powerful, that fills you up and leaves you so contented that nothing else matters. They've been physical, yes; couples tend to do that. Their passion is intense and overwhelming. But make no mistake, they're much more than just high school sweethearts; they're a couple who have found something exceedingly rare.

One constant in life, something we can count on to screw things up, is the fact that life always has to change, and because Nick has enjoyed a privileged life, he has more difficulty with change than most. Nick, his best friend Stevie, and Eden all seem to see Nick's family with a kind of awe. Stevie defines them as classic, like a Norman Rockwell picture. This perfection to which Nick is so accustomed is heavily tarnished once Mr. Brandt receives some mysterious phone calls, taking these in private and not sharing the identity of the caller. At first Nick is alarmed by the situation, but his uneasiness becomes outright shock and devastation once he discovers the truth: Nick's dad has been keeping a dirty secret, and only from his son. He once fathered a child and gave the baby up, and the man calling is, in fact, Nick's long-lost half-brother.

Understandably, Nick has mixed feelings about the truth, especially since he was deceived by someone so close to him. But the complexity of his psychological state doesn't dawn on him until he approaches his parents and expresses his shock and anger. What is most puzzling is the way he chooses to deal with this once he finds himself inexplicably filled with the compulsion to hide the facts from both Stevie, his best friend, and Eden. Though the couple enjoyed and genuinely valued their newfound companionship, Nick feels so lost that he puts significant strain on them both and also leaves himself in no-man's-land when it comes to his parents, with whom he has always enjoyed a rock-solid connection.

Alyssa B. Sheinmel is a good author who is fully capable of creating an emotionally fulfilling romance, and using complete and exceedingly realistic characters. Any readers who enjoy passionate, teenage romantic dramas should revel in THE LUCKY KIND.

Reviewed by Melanie Smith on May 10, 2011

The Lucky Kind
by Alyssa B. Sheinmel

  • Publication Date: August 28, 2012
  • Genres: Fiction
  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Ember
  • ISBN-10: 0375866086
  • ISBN-13: 9780375866081