Author: Jennifer Gooch Hummer
Publisher: Fiction Studio Books
First sentence: Jesus was in his underwear.
About the Book: Apron Bramhall has come unmoored. Fortunately, she's about to be saved by Jesus. Not that Jesus -- the actor who plays him in Jesus Christ Superstar. Apron is desperate to avoid the look-alike Mike, who's suddenly everywhere, until she's stuck in church with him one day. Then something happens -- Apron's broken heart blinks on for the first time since she's been adrift.
Mike and his boyfriend, Chad, offer her a summer job in their flower store, and Apron's world seems to calm. But when she uncovers Chad's secret, stormy seas return. Apron starts to see things the adults around her fail to -- like what love really means, and who is paying too much for it.
Apron has come unmoored, but now she'll need to take the helm if she's to get herself and those she loves to safe harbor.
My thoughts: Apron is just finishing up the seventh grade and has had a pretty rough year. Her mom passed away and her dad has started a relationship with Margie (or M, as Apron calls her). Margie is from Brazil and had been her mom's nurse, but now lives with Margie and her dad. She is on a work visa in the United States and Apron believes is looking for Mr. Right so that she will not have to leave. Meanwhile, that is all that Apron wants her to do -- leave.
To top it off, her best friend Rennie has decided that it is time for them to make other friends, so has pretty much abandoned her as well. Now M is pushing to get rid of The Boss, Apron's guinea pig! Before you can blink an eye, it is announced that she is pregnant and is marrying Apron's dad. She is not looking forward to summer having to be around M all the time!
As luck would have it, she is left in a church with her next door neighbor's nephew, who she had seen in the musical, Jesus Christ Superstar. Apron was there as it was her dad's wedding day and Mike was there with his partner Chad decorating for a wedding. Together they ran a flower store called Scents Appeal. They enlisted Apron to help with the decorations and it was the beginning of a great friendship. It also opened Apron up to a world in the 80's that not a lot of people had experience with. At 13, it was a lot to handle. I don't want to say any more about it, as I don't want to spill Chad's secret.
It was really a coming-of-age story for Apron, as she learned to deal with the different ways that you can love people and that sometimes you didn't have to do anything for someone to hate you. This was Jennifer's debut novel and I can't wait to see what she writes next. I definitely look forward to reading more of her work in the future.
Jennifer Gooch Hummer has worked as a script analyst for various talent agencies and major film studios. Her short stories have been published in Miranda Magazine, Our Stories, Glimmertrain and Fish. She has continued graduate studies in the Writer’s Program at UCLA, where she was awarded the Kirkwood Prize in fiction. Currently, Jennifer lives in Southern California and Maine with her husband and their three daughters.
You can find her online at www.jennifergoochhummer.com.
~I received a complimentary copy of this book from BookSparks in exchange for my unbiased review.~
Publisher/Publication Date: Fiction Studio, March 2012