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Anyone but You Hardcover – November 8, 2005

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 9 Up–Six years ago Seattle's father disappeared, leaving her with his girlfriend and her two sons. The story switches back and forth between the teen and Critter, a stepbrother, as they explore their own feelings and attractions to the opposite sex; their summer becomes an emotional roller coaster that will make most kids' lives seem tame by comparison. Readers are privy to Seattle's jealousy over Critter's infatuation with a preppy lifeguard, her attraction to an older skateboarder, and her father's sudden reappearance. Critter's thoughts run from wanting to protect his sister from her new boyfriend to a growing awareness of his own sexuality and conflicted feelings for Seattle. His mother is almost too good to be true as she works long night nursing shifts; shows unfaltering love, patience, and understanding for her children; and harbors no resentment toward the man who took off and left his daughter in her care. A light teen read with a smattering of four letter words and sexual descriptions.–Kathy Lehman, Thomas Dale High School Library, Chester, VA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Gr. 10-12. Fifteen-year-old skateboarder Seattle has been raised by her father's girlfriend, Layla, and Layla's sons are like brothers to her, especially 17-year-old Critter, who is also her best friend. But while waiting for summer school to begin, things start to change: Critter falls for a wealthy girl, then for Seattle; Seattle meets skateboarder Scott; and Seattle's father reappears. Told through Seattle's and Critter's alternating narratives, this features plenty of hip slang, cuss words, and teen issues, which make the story seem very present-day. Seattle's father's return feels forced rather than necessary, and the narrative voices are sometimes less than distinct. There's also some fairly strong sexual content (in one scene Critter masturbates while thinking about Seattle; in another there's an episode of oral sex).^B But explicit scenes are consistent with the emotionally charged personalities Zeises creates, especially hormonally driven Critter, and the book's contemporary flavor and the issues about family, school, sex, and love it raises will find a readership among mature teens. Shelle Rosenfeld
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers; New title edition (November 8, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385731450
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385731454
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.9 x 7.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,317,053 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Lara M. Zeises is the author of three novels for young adults. Her first, Bringing Up the Bones (2002), was named an honor book for the 2001 Delacorte Press Prize Competition. Her second, Contents Under Pressure (2004), began as her thesis project at Emerson College, where in 2001 she earned her MFA in creative writing. It has been named to the 2006 International Reading Association's Young Adult Choices list (among others) and was voted the 2006 Delaware Blue Hen Teen Book Award winner. Lara's third novel, Anyone But You (2005), was a Teen People Top 10 Pick. An excerpt from that project helped earn Lara a 2005 Emerging Artist Fellowship in Literature-Fiction from the Delaware Division of the Arts.

In addition to writing, Lara teaches part-time at the University of Delaware, where she received her BA in English-Journalism. She also facilitates creative writing workshops for both teens and adults.

You can learn more about her by visiting her website or her blog at

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
5 star
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See all 6 customer reviews
It is a fast paced novel set in the beginning of summer in Deleware.
Overall the story was well written and all the characters belonged where they were written in.
Team LitPick
Ok so I really hope there ends up being at least a sequel to this book.
M. Jones

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Team LitPick on February 25, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This book is about the lives of a "mixed" family. Sea is a girl that is taken in by her father's ex-wife when he leaves. The story is based on the interchanging of lives between Sea, and her 2 step-brothers; Critter and Jessie. They are all at an age of trying to figure out who they are and where they are going in life. When Sea feels threatened by a new person in Critter's life, she becomes withdrawen and looks for other ways to fill her time. She meets up with a boy named Scott, who shares her interest in skateboarding. During the summer the couples learn that life is not easy, no matter whether you are a boy or a girl. Eventually Sea's father comes back into the picture after many years, and that is when Sea turns to Critter. During the course of this Sea finds herself drawn to Critter as more then just a brother. The book leads to a conclusion that is both understandable due to the closeness of the family, but also that sometimes love is where you least expect it...

The book is very well written and goes at a good pace, you look forward to the next page to see what happens between the characters. I could see from the beginning that Sea and Critter where heading down the path that led them to each other. It's just a matter of reading the book to follow the growth of that relationship. Both their hearts have to be broken before they realize that they have each other both as friends and companions. I would have likes to have had Jessie play a bigger role in the story. Also, the relationship between Critter and Sarah, was much more developed story line then that of Sea and Scott, when it seems that teenage girls go through alot more emotions when it is the beginning of a relationship. I would have liked to have read more on their relationship.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Kimberly Pauley on February 15, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Okay - first the bad news. The author, at this time, has no plans to write a sequel to this book. Sigh. But maybe I can talk her into it, 'cause I'm dying to know what happens to the characters next.

Seattle has an unconventional family. Her father had dated Layla for a while, and then he'd cut out on them, leaving the young girl behind. Layla, a truly wonderful woman, took in Seattle as her own and raised her alongside her two sons: Critter (yeah, he's probably got a 'real' name, but heck if I can remember what it is and Critter fits him anyway) and Jesse. Critter is not only like Seattle's brother, he's also her best friend.

It's summer vacation and it's beyond hot. It's too hot to study (which is what Layla would like Seattle and Critter to do), too hot - not to mention bo-ring! - to get a job like Jesse, too hot to even skate. So Seattle gets the bright idea to try and sneak into a local swimming pool by having Critter chat up the girl lifeguard.

It works out a little too well and soon the plot twists with some romance: Critter's got a thing for the preppie lifeguard and Sea's met a genius skater boy on the rebound from his girlfriend. But mix that in with them also suddenly coming aware of each other in a non-brotherly-sisterly way, and you've got some tension. Then toss in the reappearance of Frank, Sea's dad...

I really enjoyed this one and all the characters. They've got bite and sass, not to mention some interesting fashion sense. Told in alternating view points (Critter and Sea), you get a glimpse into both sides of the story. I recommend this one for readers aged 14 and up.

--Kimberly Pauley, YA Books Goddess
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Xochitl on February 19, 2007
Format: Hardcover
ANYONE BUT YOU was a great read. It is a fast paced novel set in the beginning of summer in Deleware. The two narrators Seattle (Sea) and Critter are both funny and a bit broken. Sea was abandoned by her father and left with Layla, Sea's almost stepmother. Throughout the summer Sea and Critter find themselves growing apart, when they've always been close. The main reason being Critter found a girl he likes named Sarah and likewise with Sea named Scott. Critter also starts to realize his "sister's" body, and even fantasizes about it. Sea's dad also comes back into the picture which Sea does not like.

This novel told in two voices is powerful and is quite a coming of age story. I loved the characters and all of their quirks-Sea being a tough skater chick with a shaved head, Critter being a Rod Stewart loving man, Jesse being the "father of the house" at only 15.

I highly recommend this novel-its a quick read-and cannot wait to read what Zeises has in store for us next.
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