By Nina LaCour
Available now from Dutton Juvenile (Penguin Random House)
EVERYTHING LEADS TO YOU is a sweet, gentle love story propelled by genuine emotion and a surprisingly in depth look at movie making. (Author Nina LaCour has experience in the industry.) Emi Price is working as a production intern during her last semester before college. She's finally broken up with her ex-girlfriend for good (probably), but that same ex is helping her get a new job on an indie movie that she can't turn down. At the same time, an unlikely discovery at an estate sale is leading her to track down the illegitimate granddaughter of Hollywood's most famous cowboy.
I liked that EVERYTHING LEADS TO YOU includes difficult topics without focusing on them to the exclusion of all else. Emi is mixed race and a lesbian (except for that one guy), which affects but doesn't define her life. Ava and her best friend live in a homeless shelter, and Ava can't go home even to the brother she loves because her mother kicked her out.
Things happen a bit too simply in EVERYTHING LEADS TO YOU. They're slightly tempered, but not much. Emi is ridiculously good at her job for an 18-year-old intern, although she does make some mistakes and cop an attitude. Ava doesn't entirely adjust to suddenly having a ton of money well. At the same time, it works for the novel. This is a sun-drenched, lazy read, perfect for reading on the place on the way to a trip to LA.
LaCour is a talented author who knows how to keep emotions running high. This romance/coming-of-age story will have high appeal with teen readers, no matter their sexuality. The matter-of-fact friendship between Emi and Charlotte adds extra girl appeal.