Auden West is a teenage academic pro and the daughter of Dr. Victoria West, English professor extraordinaire, and Robert West, an "in the works" writer. Her parents are divorced, and her father is remarried to a twentysomething young thing named Heidi. Auden's summer begins with an invitation from her stepmother to come visit them and the new baby, a girl named Thisbe. (It's from Shakespeare, Auden's dad explains. He likes names with character.) Uncharacteristically, Auden decides to visit, realizing that this could be her last chance to connect with her dad before college starts, and later, her life as an adult.
By the end of the novel, she's learned a lot about relationships with people (and not just the boyfriend kind-- her family and new friends as well). I liked this book because you get to see the main character grow as a person, but you also see the people around her grow as well. Most of the characters in this book started off being complete jerks, but as the novel progressed, they learned a bit from their mistakes and tried to become better people. As Adam and Maggie have taught her, it's worth it to keep trying.