The Snowball Effect

The Snowball Effect

3.46 (277 ratings by Goodreads)
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Lainey Pike can tell you everything you need to know about the people in her family just by letting you know how they died. Her reckless stepfather drove his motorcycle off the highway and caused the biggest traffic jam in years. Her long-suffering grandmother lived through cancer and a heart attack before finally succumbing to a stroke. And Lainey's mother--well, Lainey's mother hanged herself in the basement just days after Lainey's high school graduation. Now Lainey's five-year-old brother is an orphan and her estranged older sister is moving back home to be his guardian. Meanwhile, Lainey's boyfriend is thinking about having a family of their own, and her best friends are always asking the wrong sorts of questions and giving advice Lainey doesn't want to hear. As she tries to pull away from everything familiar, Lainey meets an intriguing new guy who, through a series of Slurpees, burgers, and snowballs, helps her to make peace with a parent she never understood.
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Product details

  • 12-17
  • Hardback | 356 pages
  • 134.62 x 182.88 x 35.56mm | 362.87g
  • HarperCollins Publishers Inc
  • HarperCollins Publishers
  • United States
  • English
  • 0061755710
  • 9780061755712
  • 2,097,173

Review quote

Expertly weaving together quirky family stories, realistic characters and tough decisions, Hoxter presents a unique coming-of-age story, which highlights that teens need not just go with the flow but can and should control their own destinies--Kirkus Reviews
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Rating details

277 ratings
3.46 out of 5 stars
5 24% (66)
4 26% (71)
3 30% (82)
2 15% (41)
1 6% (17)

Our customer reviews

Have you ever read a story where it felt like you were actually part of the characters lives? THE SNOWBALL EFFECT is one of those kinds of stories, and Lainey Pike is one of those kinds of characters. Eighteen-year-old Lainey is your somewhat typical jaded teenage girl, except she has bigger issues to deal with. Her stepfather died in a motorcycle crash, her grandmother died shortly after that, and her mother fully lost it and hanged herself in their basement...two days after her high school graduation. Sounds like a lot to deal with, right? Well, there\'s more. Her mother left behind another child, Lainey\'s brother, Collin, who is five years old and has severe behavioral problems, and now there\'s someone else to add to their dysfunctional family: Vallery, Lainey\'s long-gone older sister. Vallery hasn\'t been in Lainey\'s life since she was a very young child, and she never even knew Collin existed. And now, Vallery is back and in charge of Collin, but not willingly and definitely not patiently. To add to everything else in Lainey\'s already chaotic life, there\'s Riley, her adorably sweet boyfriend, who wants them to move in together and start a life of their own. But now that Vallery is back and they\'re sharing the responsibility for Collin and everything else, Lainey has way more to deal with than she ever has. Lainey has to get to know Vallery all over again, and get Collin to not only behave, but behave for Vallery and come to trust her. Then there\'s the task of trying to find a way to forgive her mother for being mentally absent and leaving her. But how easy can it be to make peace with a dead woman? There was so much about THE SNOWBALL EFFECT that I absolutely adored and it\'s hard to know where to start! Lainey is one of those characters that is so easy to relate to. She\'s frustrated with her siblings and her job, she has her friends and relationships to deal with, and it\'s all complicated. Holly Nicole Hoxter has an enjoyable hit on her hands. The story did tend to jump around a bit, but it made up for that with its realistic look at a teenager\'s way of coping, while trying to move on and improve their life, plus dealing with whatever else gets thrown their way. Then there\'s Riley, whom I absolutely adored! He\'s kind and sweet and totally loves Lainey, no matter how she treats him. Talk about a fantastic boyfriend! There\'s also the relationship that Lainey, Collin, and Vallery forge with one another, and I found it to be realistic and beautiful. But there\'s more to THE SNOWBALL EFFECT than the story itself. Hoxter\'s writing flows so beautifully, and she has a talent that few writers have: the ability to take an incredibly sad situation, such as the loss of a loved one, and make it so hilarious, yet moving. This is an author that I not only look forward to reading more from, but I also know will go far. Watch out for Holly Nicole Hoxter; she\'s a talented author and an awesome storyteller. THE SNOWBALL EFFECT actually reminded me somewhat of a Sarah Dessen novel, and that is always a good thing! I definitely recommend this to all teens, and adults, who enjoy a good, realistic, entertaining more
by TeensReadToo
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