‘A Long Way From You’ tugs on heartstrings

“A Long Way From You,” by Gwendolyn Heasley. HarperTeen (Imprint of Harper Collins Publishers). Copyright 2012. 314 pages. $8.99.

Reviewed by Kaitlin Gillespie
Times-News correspondent

All her life, Kitsy has been a small town girl.
   Kitsy and her boyfriend have known each other since they were little kids and every person in the smallTexastown know all about her family drama.
   In “A Long Way From You,” Kitsy is ready to leave the smallTexastown and explore her artistic talent in the Big Apple. Thanks to the generous support of her best friend’s parents, she finally gets her chance.
   This book may seem like the stereotypical “teen girl finds herself” book, but there’s hidden depth to the characters and the journey itself. While there is light romance throughout, it is mostly a story about how Kitsy comes to terms with who she really is. By getting out of the semi-smothering atmosphere of her small town, she is able to reach deep inside herself to discover hidden talents, ask questions she never felt she could of herself and stand on her own two feet.
   “A Long Way From You” may pull on some heartstrings with its relatable characters and real-life situations, but that’s what makes it a good book. The characters and situations aren’t too far-fetched, but it instills an amount of hope in the reader. While stereotypical at times, this really is a good book for teenagers who enjoy books written by authors like Sarah Dessen or Ann Brashares.

 Kaitlin Gillespie is a rising junior at Western Alamance High School and a Teens & Twenties writer.

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