16669468Reviewed by Carrie Ardoin

In a moment of nothing more than what she considers sheer stupidity, Grace Warren simultaneously lost her virginity to biggest player in school and became pregnant. Finding this out in the summer before her senior year is bad enough, but then Grace breaks the news to her ultra-conservative parents, who up until the moment she told them had been anti-abortion, and stubbornly unaware that their child could ever do any wrong. When Grace is then kicked out of the house for her adamant refusal to have an abortion, she is quickly taken in by Helen Tenenbaum, her rich, elderly (and nosy) neighbor. The next year is the hardest of Grace’s life, and pulls her in directions she never dreamed she’d go.

This book also pulled ME in a lot of different directions. I liked Grace, and it was as if I was feeling every single emotion she was. 

It was (and still is) so very hard to for to wrap my head around the idea of parents who kick their seventeen year old daughter out on the street, no matter what she did. It was not only the fact that Grace’s parents did this, but during the entire ordeal they treated her so coldly, almost worse than they would have a stranger. They were extremely judgmental and hypocritical people, and in all honesty it’s a good thing they showed Grace their true colors in reaction to her pregnancy–now she knows what kind of people they truly are.

I really only had one problem with Screwed, but it is kind of a major one–it’s surreal how unbelievably lucky Grace was to have not only a kind, but a RICH, neighbor to take her in immediately and assist her with everything she had to face. I am 28 years old, but have known several teen mothers and I have to say that this part of the book was so far removed from reality it was almost funny. I know it’s a book, but yeah–what happened to Grace doesn’t happen to very many teen mothers at all.

The relationship between Grace and Charlie was sweet, but once again, highly fantasy-rooted. I’m not trying to spoil anything, but finding a guy to treat you the way he did in a NORMAL situation, much less when you are pregnant with someone else’s baby and still in high school, is a stroke of luck beyond measure.

Finally, I didn’t at all like the way the inner dialogue changed from person to person without warning, and sometimes from sentence to sentence. The story is told in third person, but the reader has to hear thoughts from nearly every character that is present in each scene–and a lot of the thoughts are completely irrelevant.

I did enjoy the way the book finished, but I didn’t feel like there were really any consequences for anyone’s behavior in the end. I sincerely would have enjoyed seeing more than one person have some comeuppance, or even just more thoughts about the decision Grace had to make. If you like stories with a happy ending, though, this one’s for you.

Rating: ★★★½☆ 

Carrie runs the blog Sweet Southern Home, and is a stay at home wife and mom to one little boy. When she’s not reading, she’s usually watching Netflix with her husband, playing outside with her son, or baking. Her family would describe her as sometimes annoyingly sarcastic, but mostly lovable. 

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Merit Press. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.