From page one of ‘Promise Me Something’ by Sara Kocek, the scene is set with a clear distinction of place, a sense of loss, and a wish to fit in. The gray lockers and gray walls reflect back on Reyna’s isolation of being in a new school away from her friends.
And then there are the people. Olive wasn’t Reyna’s first choice for a friend in a new high school, but she was the first one to notice her and the only one to talk to her on the first day. In fact, she wonders if it’s wise to even walk down the hallway with her, especially since she’s not even sure she wants “to be friends with someone so judgmental.” High school is a tough time, especially when you have to charter yourself through some tough waters.
Then comes Levi, whose warm brown eyes melt the anxiety and fear that Reyna feels. (sigh…)
Weighing out old friends whose lives have moved on, potential friends make being popular seem like the only way to go, and a strange, judgmental first-person-who-talks-to-you-in-high school who has a secret makes Kocek’s debut novel a must-find-out-what-happens favorite.