Author: Miranda Kenneally
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Year Published: 2013
Price: USD 10.35 at Book Depository
Meet our main character, Kate. She was a very devoted Christian and always did everything right. One day, she helped her friend, Emily, getting abortion and after that Kate felt so sinned and guilty.
On a summer after she had graduated high school, Kate joined Cumberland Creek camp as an art class instructor. There she met a lot of new friends, and also some old ones. There was Will Whitfield, the boy she had a crush on at school, but sadly Will was accompanied by his girlfriend, Parker (from Stealing Parker!!). And Matt, a hot and handsome lifeguard who happened to be the same person as a geeky boy who loved to play guitar and was bullied at the same camp, a couple of years ago. And also, a boy whom Kate had shared her first kiss with.
After what had happened to Emily, Kate had always thought that love could be a dangerous thing. It could drive you crazy and do sins, so that Kate always put a distance with her fellow instructors. But Matt seemed to want to be with her and Kate couldn't deny her heart that she also wanted to be with Matt.
But what if her relationship with Matt would lead to another sin she knew she won't forget for the rest of her life?
This is the third book by Miranda Kenneally that I read. While I love Catching Jordan because of the sport and jocks, and I put Stealing Parker as my most favorite book in 2012, sadly I can't feel the same enjoyment when I read Things I Can't Forget. I don't hate Kate like what some readers feel and write in their reviews. Actually, I can understand her thought and the reason why she feels she has to keep her distance with the other instructors. When you grow up being taught about one thing continuously, it will stuck in your brain and heart and... well your instinct. And that what happens to Kate. She was taught that premarital sex is wrong (and also some other Christian values). How was she supposed to feel when she found out that her best friend got pregnant and then helped her to abort it? How was she supposed to feel when she sees that her fellow instructors at the camp decide to spend the night together, boys and girls, and make out with each other on random places?
I also think that the interaction between Kate and Parker is sweet. Through Parker, Kate learned that life is not as black and white as she often been taught before. That Parker was alienated by Kate's church (and Parker's former church) after people found out that Parker's mom was a lesbian and that Parker's best friend, Drew, was gay and it's not a problem for Parker at all. Parker's boyfriend, Will, also helped Kate so much and very motivating. Will and Parker are definitely my favorite couple.
The problem is what happens next, after Kate and Matt finally decided to give their feeling a try. At first it feels sweet but after a couple of make out sessions, yes, I'm bored.. And I feel like Kate had lost her identity as a Christian. She kept getting confused on how she was supposed to feel without any effort to find the answer. Hey, just go read your bible or Christian's guidance for teens books or have a consultation with your priest or whatever. I just dislike people who whine about why they have so many problems without trying to find the solution. And Matt, although he's a pretty sweet guy, I can't fall for him as I fell for Ty and Henry and Corndog and also so many other guys from the previous books.
While I don't really like with how the story goes, Miranda Kenneally fortunately hasn't lost her touch in making some interesting and unique supporting characters. All the instructors in the camp has their own personality and they are not perfect. It feels like real life. And well, the summer camp ambiance makes me want to have a church retreat again. This book is a kind of book that you will still enjoy reading although you don't fully agree with the idea of the story.
Definitely waiting for Racing Savannah.