My rating: 4 of 5 stars
It's no secret that I love this series, and because I've been reading them out of order and already met Matt & Kate, I was really looking forward to reading about when they got together.
Kate is a churchy, good girl who is so religious she's super annoying about her beliefs. She constantly judges everyone around her and pretty much condemns everything they say and do. However, when her friend gets into some serious boy trouble and Kate helps her 'commit sin', she can't get over what she did. She judges her friend, stays away from her, and constantly feels sorry for herself because she was dragged into the situation.
(I won't reveal what it was because, spoilers.)
During the summer, Kate signs up to be a counselor at Cumberland Creek camp to try and put the bad memories behind her. And right away, her judgemental ways rear their ugly head. But then she meets Matt. A gorgeous boy from her past. One she really likes and slowly starts to fall for. He makes her feel things she's never felt before, and soon, she starts to realise that temptation might not be as bad as she thought. Though it sure is confusing...
I have to admit that out of all the books in this series, this one had the only main character I just could not relate to. It wasn't her goody-two shoes ways, it was how her belief system turned her into a judgemental monster who later becomes a total hypocrite and doesn't know how to deal with it. But she wasn't that bad throughout the whole book, just when she got on her churchy pedestal. That's when she really bugged me.
My favourite thing about Kate--and why I ultimately did enjoy her story--was that she spoke her mind. So often teenage characters bottle things up or don't say what they mean, but she did. She was always honest, and I really liked that about her. I was also glad to see her tolerance and understanding evolve in the end, but didn't like some of the things she did to get there.
It was also nice to catch up with Parker & Will, plus Jordan & Sam. And I really liked Matt. He made the book! I liked him as a character and also because, in so many ways, he helped Kate find some real balance.
This was another interesting book in the Hundred Oaks series.