Indiana University freshman Emma Hammond spends a lot of her time avoiding Josh Morgan, her former best friend and crush. She spends a lot of her time tuning out her bubbly roommate, Tiffany, who happens to be dating one of Josh Morgan's fraternity brothers. She spends a lot of her time feeling anxious, out of place, lonely, awkward and wishing she was home.
And then her family wins the lottery. Contrary to what you would assume, winning the lottery does not make life any less confusing. Sure, you can buy Everything You Want, but it isn't always the stuff that you can buy that will solve your problems.
I really enjoyed this one. Emma and her family members dealt with the windfall in completely different ways, all of them realistic and none of them irritating. (In other words, no one acted like a Poor Little Rich Girl. The money made life more complicated, but not in a "Oh, darling, I just don't know... where should we go first, to Biarritz or to Cancun?" way -- it was more of a "Is this guy talking to me because we just won the lottery?" way.) And while a lot of Emma's issues were connected to the money, they weren't new -- they were just exacerbated by the change. So, yes, it's a book about winning the lottery -- but it's really more of a Figuring Out Who You Are/Coming Of Age And Into Your Own story than anything else.
My only complaint about the book was that everything wrapped up way, way, way too quickly. I enjoyed the pace up until the last twenty or so pages, when everything sped up and all of the plotlines concluded, bang bang bang. Sometimes life works like that, yes, but I found it somewhat jarring.
Definitely recommended to older fans of Sarah Dessen and other contemporary realistic fiction.