Edgewater by Courtney Sheinmel

Category: literature and fiction, homelessness and poverty, social and family issues
Publisher:  Amulet Books 
Release Date: September 8, 2015
Format: advance review ebook (eARC)
My Rating: 4 Stars


Lorrie Hollander used to be a rich girl, but now she's lost everything because of the secrets and lies of the people around her. It's been 12 years since Lorrie's mother skipped town and left Lorrie in the care of her unstable aunt Gigi. Together they live in a neglected, decrepit mansion called Edgewater, the eyesore in a town of extraordinary wealth and privilege.

When Charlie, the son of an esteemed senator, takes an interest in Lorrie, her shame for her family and lifestyle runs deep. But what she doesn't know is that Charlie's family is hiding something, too, and that their secrets are inextricably tied. Now Lorrie must confront the truth about her family—and everything she ever thought she knew about herself.


Edgewater honestly made me deeply sad. I couldn't relate personally to the incredible wealth and privileged lifestyle that Lorrie led but I definitely could relate to her loss, deep loneliness, and feelings of responsibility to care for others. She was forced into being the grownup in a bizarre situation. She and her sister Susannah were young and should have been cared for by the adults in their lives but instead, Lorrie was made to feel responsible.

The story is filled with hidden motives and secrets that caused more and more pain. Some characters ran away, some went a little batty in their anxiety and fear, and some were oblivious.

This story made me cry, it made me feel vulnerable. It was gritty and real.

As a reviewer for NetGalley, I received a review copy of this book in exchange for my honest and unbiased review. My thanks to NetGalley, the author, and publisher.

books by Courtney Sheinmel

Courtney Sheinmel

Courtney Sheinmel

Courtney Sheinmel is the author of several books for kids and teens including Edgewater, Positively, Sincerely, and the Stella Batts series for young readers. Her books have received numerous awards, including the Sequoyah Award (Positively), a National Parenting Publication Awards honorable mention (the Stella Batts series), and have appeared on recommended lists, including the New York Public Library's Stuff for the Teenage, and the ABC Best Books for Children. In addition to writing, Courtney served as a judge on the national level for the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, and she received a National Scholastic Outstanding Educator Award for her work as a writing instructor at Writopia Lab, a non-profit organization serving kids ages 8-18. Courtney lives in New York City.