by Jaclyn Moriarty
352 pages (Paperback)
Published April 1st 2005 by Scholastic
ISBN: 0439498821 (ISBN13: 9780439498821)
Three female students from Ashbury High write to three male students from rival Brookfield High as part of a pen pal program, leading to romance, humiliation, revenge plots, and war between the schools.
The Year of Secret Assignments is the second book in the Asbury/Brookefield series. I only got to know that after reading this book. Facepalm? Well, you really can't blame me. The Year of Secret Assignments is a standalone, despite being a part of a series. So in case you made the same mistake of picking this book up without having read the first book, Feeling Sorry for Cecelia, you need not to worry.
The Year of Secret Assignments has the most creative format of a novel I have ever read. The story was told mainly in letters, diary entries, trial transcript, etc. The timeline was a little confusing, but as soon as you get to read the letters from all three pairs, the story is not so hard to chain together.
One thing I loved about this book is that the characters felt so real. I rooted for them, especially Seb and Lyd and Charlie and Em. All have very distinct voices and interesting personalities. I enjoyed reading each of their letters. As a teen who used to have textmates who I never saw in person, it wasn't hard to relate to them. It was fun seeing these characters go through the same situation. Like, wanting to know so badly how your textmate looks like and that feeling like you've really fallen in love with him. It was like being in that textmates-phase of my life all over again. Only, theirs was so much interesting and fun. If you want to laugh and relive some of those fun teenage years of your life, this book is for you.
Rating: 5/5 stars