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Set in the 1980s in California, this poignant yet powerful coming-of-age story follows a young girl and her new friend who learns about family, friendship, allyship, and finding your way in a complicated world over the course of one eventful summer.

It’s summer, and all ten-year-old Bug wants to do is go to the beach with her older brother and hang out with the interesting personalities around her Venice, California, home. But Danny is too big to want to spend time with her and Bug’s mom is too busy. Fortunately, their neighbor Philip’s nephew, Frankie, has come to visit.

Bug’s not too sure about hanging out with a boy at first, but when they decide to start their own search for a local criminal, they form an instant bond. And as the summer unfolds, old secrets and new truths bubble to the surface, teaching Frankie and Bug some important lessons about life and family, being your true self, and how to navigate in a world that’s not always just or fair.

Laina Karavani

Gayle Forman is an award-winning author and journalist whose articles have appeared in numerous publications, including SeventeenCosmopolitan, and Elle in the US. Gayle Forman’s novel, If I Stay, was released as a blockbuster movie starring Chloë Grace Moretz in 2014. Her most recent YA novel is We Are Inevitable. Gayle lives in Brooklyn, New York with her family.