Alex is expecting a nice, relaxing summer in which she'll think about nothing more strenuous than booking rafting trips for her family's whitewater rafting company. When Sean comes back into town, Alex realizes that she still has feelings for him. But things ended so badly last summer when Alex's dad died. How can she and Sean ever become friends again?
Heartbreak River gives us a different spin on some difficult issues--the death of a parent, the war in Iraq, and the importance of friendship. Alex has shut herself off from most people ever since her dad died, with the exception of her best friend and cousin Mala. I liked that this novel stressed the importance of family and the importance of dealing with your problems. Mala has always been there for Alex and I think alot of Alex's character development revolved around her needing to understand that Mala has problems, too. The one major thing that bothered me is that the details surrounding Alex's dad's death were hinted at but never fully revealed until later in the novel. In fact, there was so much hinting that it almost felt like a sequel to me. However, I was really into the rafting aspect of the book so I think that if you like water sports or outdoor themed novels, you'll enjoy Heartbreak River. I was waffling between 2 stars and 3 stars, and I've decided to give it 3 stars mainly because I enjoyed the setting, a whitewater rafting company, and it's incorporation into the novel.