Publisher: Little, Brown
Age Group: YA
Before her mother died, Shelby promised three things: to listen to her father, to love as much as possible, and to live without restraint. Those Promises become harder to keep when Shelby's father joins the planning committee for the Princess Ball, an annual dance that ends with a ceremonial vow to live pure lives -- in other words, no "bad behavior," no breaking the rules, and definitely no sex.
Torn between Promises One and Three, Shelby makes a decision -- to exploit a loophole and lose her virginity before taking the vow. But somewhere between failed hookup attempts and helping her dad plan the ball, Shelby starts to understand what her mother really meant, what her father really needs, and who really has the right to her purity.
I first began this novel thinking it was short and a quick read, but I found it was a lot more than that. So much happened in this book. Shelby was a relatable character. She had just lost her mother and was left with three promises that she vowed to follow. But following them was hard because it led her to many decisions that she herself wasn't too sure of. Shelby and her dad are on the committee for the Princess Ball and Shelby starts realizing that she will have to break her mom's promises and she doesn't want to, so she goes out to just get laid. But throughout the book, Shelby finds herself and fights with herself. Shelby wasn't just some character, she was a character with feelings and you actually felt for Shelby. She was a character with humor and pain.
I found the book to be a great read, but I wouldn't call it a quick read because so much happened and you felt something for all the characters, especially Shelby and the book left you wanting to know how the Princess Ball was going to be like at the end.
The cover was simple, but sweet. I don't think you could capture the premise of this book in a more perfect cover. This is the first book I've read by Jackson Pearce, but I'm sure I'll be reading more in the future because her writing is great and her stories really speak to you.