If You Only Knew
by Prerna Pickett
Published by: Swoon Reads
Publication date: February 11th 2020
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
A boy recently released from jail and the daughter of a prosecutor fall for each other against the odds in this YA novel.
Corey has just been released from jail, and all he wants is a new beginning. But when his former gang comes knocking, Corey agrees to vandalize the home of Kent Hopper, the prosecutor who put him away.
To erase the guilt she carries from getting away with a crime, Tessa spends most of her nights riding her motorcycle. When she catches Corey destroying her father’s car, she doesn’t see a criminal: She sees a way to finally right her own wrongs. So instead of turning Corey over to the police, she convinces her father to give Corey a second chance.
As Tessa and Corey spend more time with each other, it becomes difficult to ignore the pull between them. But they’re both keeping secrets, and when those secrets come to light, they’ll each have to face their demons in order to have a future together.
Prerna’s Letter to Her Younger Self:
I know right now it seems like the rest of your life is so far away, but let me tell you, it’s going to happen to you so fast you’ll barely be able to catch your breath when it does. Right now you’re spending time your group of friends, skipping school way too frequently, and pining over a boy who is also pining over you. Spoiler alert, you’re going to marry him and have a bunch of kids.
But that’s not why I’m writing to you. I’m writing to you because you have a head full of stories, and you don’t know what to do with them. You’re restless and anxious, because you can’t seem to get rid of them, and you’re too afraid to write them down. How could someone like you possibly become a real writer? You’re a nobody, you’re not special. You just want a simple life. You want to get married to that boy, have kids, and live happily ever after. But even still, it nags at you. You probably just finished reading your favorite Sarah Dessen book, and even though you were incredibly happy and satisfied by it, you still wonder why there aren’t any books about girls who look like you.
Well, one more spoiler alert, there will be. They won’t come out until you’ve finally found the courage to write them yourself, but you’ll devour and adore them nonetheless. Don’t be afraid of your stories, Prerna. Don’t be afraid to want to see yourself in them. Don’t be afraid to accept yourself wholly. Don’t be afraid to explore what it’s like to be a brown girl who is still navigating her identity. It’s okay to be confused, because guess what? You’re ever changing. You don’t have to have it all figured out right now. Remember that you are enough, that it’s okay to be scared, but don’t allow it to hold you back.
Remember, Prerna, to have patience with yourself. To be kind to yourself. Remember to let the words help you figure out who you are, and who you want to be.
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I’m a wife, mom, writer, reader. Lover of foods, beaches, the ocean, shoes, starry nights. Sometimes I pretend like I’m good at drawing.