You know, I think I read more YA fiction now than I did when I was an actual teenager. This week it was Forever in Blue: The Fourth Summer of the Sisterhood (Ann Brashares, 2007), the final volume in the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series. It's hard to review just this book, because it doesn't even remotely stand alone--you need to know who the characters are and what's happened in the previous three volumes to not feel lost. In this volume, the four girls have just finished their first years of college and are to various degrees drifting and out-of-place from the transition. It's not quite how I remember being 18 or 19. I was actually all about the certainties back then. But in some ways it's how I think I should've been at 19, if that makes any sense.
It's definitely the end of the series--Brashares slams the door on any possibility of sequels. But since the characters are still so young, there's not really a Happily Ever After closure. All we get is the promise the characters can mature well, that they're starting to understand their inner demons and how to combat and channel them. And that's realistic, even if part of me wanted a "10 years later" epilogue showing their lives as women.