By: HR Willaston
Length: 447 pages
Release date: Sep 23, 2013
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Andy Qwinn has always loved everything about water. She trains all year to keep her spot on her high school's swim team. She volunteers at an aquarium. And she earns extra money as a science tutor to help her reach her dream of going away to college and working to protect marine animals and their ocean homes.
In a family where artistic abilities are coveted above everything else, being placed on the varsity swim team as a freshman or earning an internship to work with sea otters isn't seen as a great accomplishment. Spending the summer in art camp is more important than being offered the chance to study dolphins in Belize. Her four siblings have been in the artistic spotlight since preschool. At 17, Andy can't act, draw, paint or sing. She didn't inherit her mother's graceful gift of dance or her father's talent to play any instrument he picks up. While her parents attempt to pull Andy's "hidden talent" out through dance, music and art lessons, her stepparents have their own ways of reminding her about her failures - both as an artist and as a daughter- and that she isn't even ordinary in a family full of extraordinary.
Everything changes when she decides to runaway and spend her spring break doing what she's been dreaming of doing for years. With the click of a mouse, she changes her itinerary from an ordinary week long visitation with her mom, step-dad and step-sister to an extraordinary nine days in Hawaii, working at an aquarium with a couple of monk seals and their intern - Kai. She spends the week meeting new people, getting the chance to experience things she's never thought possible before and learning more about herself than she could in any art class.
How much can Andy's life change in nine days? Doing what she wants? Making her own decisions without parental approval? Dealing with the consequences of those decisions?
What happens when the nine days are up?