If you’re planning on reading this book, you already know Jessica Darling (and if you don’t, you should read the other books in the series: Sloppy Firsts, Second Helpings, and Charmed Thirds. I read them in the wrong order, but I think they’d be better in the right one). She’s an intelligent, funny, three-dimensional character created by the very talented Megan McCafferty. In this fourth installment in the series, she has just graduated from Columbia, and is living in New York and sharing a bedroom with her best friend, Hope, while her long-time boyfriend, Marcus, has just enrolled at Princeton as a twenty-three year old college freshman. On the day she decides that their lives are too different, that they can’t be together when Marcus hates the city that she loves and she could never love Princeton and be the girlfriend of a 23-year-old college freshman, he proposes to her. She asks for time to think, and he gives her one week to consider.

These are the notebooks she keeps during that week. Startling secrets are revealed. Flashbacks are abundant (so it’s not really just the chronicle of that one week). And this time, instead of in her earlier diaries, Jessica is not writing for herself. She’s writing to Marcus.

I have to say, I enjoyed the other books in the series more. That’s not to say that this one wasn’t gripping and smart and funny; it is all of those things. Megan McCafferty is a very, very talented writer, and her characters all (pardon the cliche) absolutely step off the page. However, I just think that her earlier Jessica Darling books are more brilliant. If you’re already a fan of the series, go ahead and read this one, and if you’re not, I’d advise you to pick up Sloppy Firsts!

Four Stars