Synopses & Reviews
Scarlett Hughes is overly involved in the lives of everyone around her, especially her neighbors (a young goth girl; a forgetful mailman; and a older couple whose main excitement in their lives are the formal sounding scam emails from foreign lands). Scarlett is thrust solidly into her own life when her sister, Juliet, returns home from school — pregnant and surprisingly married to a sweet, handsome boy who Juliet seems to have no interest in, but who is hopelessly in love with her.
The Six Rules of Maybe is about the necessity of dreams, as well as the necessity of facing reality and speaking the truth.
"When 17-year-old Scarlett's older sister, Juliet, moves back home pregnant, she brings with her a romantic new husband 'she'd never before even mentioned.' While Scarlett's feelings for Hayden grow she secretly reads the love notes he writes to Juliet and sneaks out to join him for late-night chats he remains devoted to her pretty sister, who in turn seems fixated on her loser high school boyfriend. Caletti's (The Secret Life of Prince Charming) main characters are well drawn and complex, especially mature Scarlett, who, to her own detriment, is constantly looking after everyone else in her life. Readers may find some of Scarlett's neighbors over the top, such as an elderly couple whose belief in Internet scams leads them to Africa. Scarlett's devotion to them also seems extreme, but it clarifies both why 'being needed sometimes made me feel good' and why she feels connected to kind Hayden. In the end, readers will be willing to overlook some of the more outlandish characters to focus on the moving story involving Scarlett and her family. Ages 12 up." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Reminiscent of the best of Sarah Dessen's work, this novel is beautifully written, deftly plotted, and movingly characterized." School Library Journal
"Caletti is at her best as she makes the case for the Rules of Maybe, how to hope, ways to persist, when to give up, and how to go on." Booklist
"The fact that all three women, Scarlet, Juliet, and their mother, struggle with their view of men is explored with particular depth and subtlety..." Bulletin for the Center for Children's Books
"Caletti is a wonderfully gifted writer. Her prose is infused with wisdom and wit, and her characters are all deeply layered. Readers of all ages will undoubtedly enjoy this." Romantic Times
Scarlet's characterization is particularly original...Her relationship with Hayden...is touching and credible...The fact that all three women...struggle with their view of men is explored with particular depth and subtlety...-- andlt;bandgt;The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, May 2010andlt;/bandgt;
Juliet was always in the lead, and I was her echo.and#8221; So says seventeen-year-old Scarlet about her older sister, who is once again in the lead, having returned home with a husband neither Scarlet nor her mother have ever heard of, let alone met, and a baby on the way. As the summer progresses, Scarlet grows close to Hayden, Julietand#8217;s husband, and begins to worry that Julietand#8217;s old selfishness is going to destroy her new family even before itand#8217;s established. Calettiand#8217;s fluid, musing style and keen perceptions serve her particularly well in this depiction of Scarletand#8217;s summer of maturation; itand#8217;s not so much that the external events are momentous as they believably provide just enough impetus for Scarlet to enrich and transform her view of herself, her sister, and her family. Scarletand#8217;s characterization is particularly original: a happy meddler in peopleand#8217;s lives, she adores leaving secret gifts and pulling strings in ways that will bring joy, and she empathizes too much with clingy lonely outsiders to tell them to get lost. Her relationship with Hayden, a combination of friendship, protectiveness, and crush, is touching and credible, and it provides an effective agent for her increasing flashes of greater understanding. The fact that all three women, Scarlet, Juliet, and their mother, struggle with their view of men is explored with particular depth and subtlety, each is affected in her own way not only by the departure of Scarlett and Julietand#8217;s father but by the responses of the other two to that fact. This is a kind of reconsideration thatand#8217;s a key component of maturation, and young adults in the thick of the process will find much of themselves in Scarletand#8217;s journey. -- andlt;bandgt;andlt;iandgt;BULLETIN, andlt;/iandgt;May 2010, STARandlt;/bandgt;
and#8220;Reminiscent of the best of Sarah Dessenand#8217;s work, this novel is beautifully written, deftly plotted, and movingly characterized.and#8221; and#8211;andlt;iandgt;School Library Journalandlt;BRandgt; andlt;/iandgt;andlt;BRandgt; and#8220;Caletti is a wonderfully gifted writer. Her prose is infused with wisdom and wit, and her characters are all deeply layered. Readers of all ages will undoubtedly enjoy this.and#8221;andlt;iandgt; and#8211;Romantic Times BOOKREVIEWSandlt;BRandgt; andlt;/iandgt;andlt;BRandgt; and#8220;Scarletand#8217;s adoration of Hayden is both poignant and realistic... Julietand#8217;s pursuit of an old boyfriend, a bad boy, rings true.and#8221; andlt;iandgt;and#8212; Booklistandlt;/iandgt;andlt;BRandgt; andlt;BRandgt; and#8220;The main characters are well drawn and complex.and#8221; and#8211;andlt;iandgt;Publishers Weeklyandlt;/iandgt; andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt; andlt;iandgt;andlt;/iandgt;
Caletti tells her layered, engaging story in her usual style that includes lots of introspection on the part of her narrator, a multitude of fascinating characters, and loads of skillfully crafted sentences that will entice readers racing through to slow down and re-read with pleasure before speeding on again. -- andlt;bandgt;Jennifer M. Brabander, Horn Book Magazine, May/June 2010andlt;/bandgt;
A funny, poignant, uplifting, and truly authentic novel by National Book Award finalist author Deb Caletti.
When Scarlett Hughes's sister returns home from school pregnant and surprisingly married to a sweet man she has no interest in, Scarlett is forced to take a look inward for the first time. She discovers the necessity of dreams as well as the necessity of facing reality and speaking the truth.
About the Author
Deb Caletti is the award-winning author of The Queen of Everything
; Honey, Baby, Sweetheart
; and The Nature of Jade
, among others. In addition to being a National Book Award finalist, Deb's work has gained other distinguished recognition, including the PNBA Best Book Award, the Washington State Book Award, and School Library Journal
's Best Book award, as well as finalist citations for the California Young Reader Medal and the PEN USA Literary Award. She lives with her family in Seattle. You can visit her at debcaletti.com
and become a fan on Facebook.