I loved it. It made my hands tingle with the emotions I was feeling on behalf of KJ. She's a 16-year-old girl living in West End Montana near Yellowstone National Park. She lives with her widowed dad who is a guide for fishermen, hunters, and rich people who want to get a feel for the park. She struggles with knowing her father wants her to do well enough in school to have a better shot at life than West End Montana can give, dyslexia, not being popular, and thinking her dad would have been better off if she'd died in the car crash that killed her mother when KJ was 3. Or thinking he'd much rather she were a son and not a daughter.
She meets a new boy that moved to town with his single mother who has come to study the wolves that had been reintroduced into the area. The ranchers, and hunters are very angry that "Washington" has brought the wolves back since they attack the sheep or cattle the ranchers raise, or have lowered the population of the Elk (even though the Elk had overgrazed the area causing problems with the vegetation, aggravating the erosion, and even effecting the fishing.)
Though KJ the Main Character has her faults and her weakness, I never felt like she was overly whiny or that she was stereotypical. She was awesome. She overcame her dyslexia by studying hard, she became the editor of the school paper, and caused a stir in the community when she began writing about the wolves and not just in a way that made the ranchers happy. She told it like it was and got a lot of crap from it, but still made friends along with her enemies.
She had guilt, but also stood up for herself and did what she thought was right. Though there were adults featured in the story, she held her own and pulled off something fantastic. Plus there is romance, even though it wasn't the happily ever after kind. It was real and fun and special, and I felt happy for what she learned and accomplished.
Kristen Chandler wrote a fantastic debut novel and I really really can't wait until she writes another one. I want to learn how to write like her and give other people the chance to feel about my characters the way I felt about hers.
If you've read it, I'd like to hear what you thought about it. If you haven't read it, I highly recommend it.