C. Nordhielm Wooldridge

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Last Updated on June 7, 2022, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 137

The summer 15-year-old Alison Rose [of Breaking Up ] spends in California with her father and his wife throws several wrenches into her normally easy-going life. A sudden attraction for best friend Gretchen's older brother Ethan creates problems in the girls' relationship; and then there are the ugly things Daddy...

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The summer 15-year-old Alison Rose [of Breaking Up] spends in California with her father and his wife throws several wrenches into her normally easy-going life. A sudden attraction for best friend Gretchen's older brother Ethan creates problems in the girls' relationship; and then there are the ugly things Daddy starts saying about Mom and close friend Peggy. In the end, Ali concludes that "there are different ways of loving people."… Executed in the facile, first-person style of an author not writing but merely recording what her protagonist is thinking, this is no literary gem. The plot is slow getting started and the juxtaposition of the mother's healthy, loving lesbian relationship with the father's insecure traditional marriage is too carefully orchestrated.

C. Nordhielm Wooldridge, in a review of "Breaking Up," in School Library Journal, Vol. 27, No. 2, October, 1980, p. 156.

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