Poor Fizzy — she does everything she can to get it right, but just can’t seem to make everyone happy. Everyone being her recently divorced parents, their new significant others, the school counselor and her mean math teacher. Her mother moved her across town after the divorce, so she has no friends at her school. In fact, she has no one to talk to at all besides her aunt, who’s helping her try to win the Southern Living cook-off. And even that relationship has had its share of tense moments!
“There’s nothing worse than leftovers, except school cafeteria leftovers, which are so bad they should be called something else–leftunders maybe?”
This book broke my heart a little. I’m incredibly fortunate to be the child of two people who’ve been married for almost 40 years (even if they don’t always like each other very much), but Payne’s descriptions of Fizzy’s emotions following the divorce really touched me. She tries so hard to be polite, to follow the rules (even if she can’t always figure out what they are), and just seems to get smacked down at every turn. Of course, that just makes it even more emotional when she finally starts to win. This is YA that definitely works for adults as well.