Title: Lipstick Apology
Author: Jennifer Jabaley
Release Date: August 6, 2009
Rating: 4 out of 5
From the publisher’s website:
Emily Carson has always been a good girl. So when she throws a party the night her parents leave for vacation, she’s sure she’ll get busted. What Emily doesn’t know is that her parents will never return. That their plane will go down. And the only thing left amidst the wreckage will be a tray table with her mother’s last words: EMILY PLEASE FORGIVE ME, scrawled in lipstick.
Now it’s fall in New York City and Emily’s trying to pick up the pieces of her shattered life. Her public tragedy captures the attention of more than just the media—and soon two very different boys at her new school are pursuing her. But even with such delicious distractions, Emily can’t let go of her mother’s mysterious apology. Does she have the courage to face the truth?
With the help of a whole new kind of family—one that includes a make-up artist to the stars, a teen hand model, and a wacky hairdresser—Emily must choose between the boy who makes her forget it all, and the one who encourages her to remember, and ultimately, heal.
When I first heard the premise of Lipstick Apology, I thought it sounded really interesting. The idea of a teenage girl trying to solve the mystery of her mother’s final message, all while dealing with her grief and adjusting to a new life sounded like it would make a really great novel.
I really liked the character of Emily. In a lot of ways, she was a typical teenager, concerned with school, boys, friends, and clothes. But she was also a great role model. Emily had a lot of integrity. She was a very moral person; she looked out for others and was loyal to her friends. I really appreciated her as a character and enjoyed getting to know her in Lipstick Apology.
Jolie, Emily’s aunt, was a great character as well. While very successful, she has had heartbreak after heartbreak in her personal life. Additionally, she was trying to deal with her sister’s death while also communicating to Emily that she was not alone in the world. While she was not always graceful at juggling all of these issues, she did her best. She was a real character, and someone adults can sympathize with.
I was a little bit disappointed in Lipstick Apology as far as the mystery was concerned. Since it was in the title and featured prominently in the book’s summary, I figured it would be a central part of the novel. While it is relevant to the plot, it’s not what the book is about. Still, I was able to appreciate Lipstick Apology for what it was – a novel about a girl coming to terms with her grief over her parents’ death and learning to live again.
Lipstick Apology was an interesting book that I enjoyed reading. Despite the heavy subject matter, it’s actually a very light read. The book doesn’t dwell on grief, which is both good and bad. It makes it less realistic, as if Emily gets over her parents’ death a little too quickly, but also makes it a much more fun book to read. I look forward to seeing what Jennifer Jabaley does next!