Julia and Cassie were best friends since they were very very young. Spending every moment of their idyllic childhood summers together, wandering, exploring and dreaming of the future. With high school approaching fast, changes in the girls begin to tear them apart. Once inseparable, Julia now focuses on her academic accomplishments and Cassie’s apathetic tendencies drive her to a dangerous friendship and flirtations with the wrong boys. Julia comes from a loving home with two supportive parents, while Cassie’s single mother begins to date a somewhat religious man that sets out to change her ways and destroy her relationship with her mother. Having loved The Woman Upstairs, I was a bit disappointed with this latest novel by incredible author Claire Messud. So much of the girls relationship felt contrived. Julia’s obsession with Cassie’s well being and belief that she knew everything the girl was feeling was over the top. There were some good characters but many unanswered questions and paths that led nowhere. I felt like I put a lot in and then walked away with nothing.