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Fall for Anything    by Courtney Summers order for
Fall for Anything
by Courtney Summers
Order:  USA  Can
Griffin, 2010 (2010)

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* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Courtney Summers, author of Cracked Up To Be and Some Girls Are, now brings us something different yet again - yet still starring a young woman in extremis - Fall for Anything.

The story's protagonist is young Eddie Reeves, an only child whose father (famous photographer/reclusive artist Seth Reeves) recently committed suicide and whose mother has been so consumed by her own grief that she has had no attention to spare for her daughter's misery. Robyn keeps all the blinds drawn in the house, remains in her bathrobe all day, and ignores her own and Eddie's basic needs.

Eddie's hands have been cold since the tragedy and she spends her nights at Tarver's Warehouse, 'The last place my father was', consumed by her need to understand why the loving father she knew felt impelled to leave them in such an awful fashion. Her only solace is Milo, her best friend since second grade. But Milo seems distracted and his old girlfriend, Missy (who was 'born to party') is in town for the summer.

Eddie's misery only increases when her mother's best friend Beth shows up to take them in hand. 'Beth is what happens to mean girls after they graduate high school, turn forty, and develop gerontophobia and thanatophobia'. Beth orders Eddie around and tells her to pick up her father's things at his studio as the space is about to be rented again.

Then Eddie meets Culler Evans, a young photographer whom her father mentored, and who feels the same passion to share stories through his art. They both feel they 'need to know why' Seth did what he did. Culler accompanies her to the studio where they find photographs of six stark, deserted locations. They begin to visit them together, and find parts of what seem to be a final message - how will it end?

When Culler, who has been taking pictures of Eddie, does something that totally shocks her, she's left with another why? ('The question my life has become.') Fall for Anything is an extraordinary story, a YA must read that's as empathetic, insightful, and credible as Courtney Summers' previous works - and they set a high standard.

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