Summary: Petite and young-looking, seventeen-year-old Sarah has been best friends with the glamorous and seductive Brianna forever, but when she starts liking Brianna's boyfriend, their friendship becomes precarious.
The Unwritten Rule is the second book that I’ve ready by Elizabeth Scott, the first being Living Dead Girl. Before delving into this particular book, having read two books by Scott, I’ve realized that she is able to write about sometimes difficult subjects to deal with, such as child abuse/kidnapping and being in love with your best friend’s boyfriend, that not many other teen authors are willing to write about. I like this quality of Scott because these issues should be addressed since so many teens either hear about them in their lives or deal with the issues themselves.
Now, onto The Unwritten Rule…I chose this book because the premise, a girl liking her best friend’s boyfriend, is one I have yet to experience in any teen fiction I have read. From the very beginning of this book, it is clear to readers that Sarah does not just like Brianna’s boyfriend, but has really strong feelings for him. Sarah’s struggle to try and get over Brianna’s boyfriend and just let them be happy in their relationship will have readers emotionally connecting with Sarah because there is not just a cut and dry solution to the problem. As much as Sarah wants to forget about Brianna’s boyfriend, she just can’t. Readers will feel Sarah’s many emotions including happiness, sadness, excitement, guilt, and more.
Although the premise of this book sparked my interest and I liked the way Scott writes about Sarah’s feelings, at times the plot was kind of slow and I felt like it just wasn’t going anywhere. I found myself talking to the book saying, “Just get on with it already!” Nonetheless, I still wanted to know what happened at the end. Aside from Sarah’s story, I was impressed with the way Scott describes Brianna and how with very little description, Scott is able to allow readers to see how manipulative and mean Brianna is towards Sarah, even though she is “just trying to be nice”. This touches on another tough issue that many teens experience, verbal abuse from friends. Although teens may think verbal abuse is always hateful and apparent, that is not always the case, such as in Brianna and Sarah’s relationship with one another.
Overall, I had high expectations of The Unwritten Rule from both the premise and from how much I enjoyed Living Dead Girl, but I just wasn’t fully impressed. Although the plot was slow and uneventful at points, I would still recommend it to teen girls looking for a different kind of romance book.
I “liked” this book and would give it 3 out of 5 stars.
***If you liked this book, you might like one of these…***
Something like Fate by Susan Colasanti
Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
Sophomore Switch by Abby McDonald