By Leila Sales
Simon Pulse, 2011. 303 pgs. Teen fiction
For pretty much her entire life, Chelsea has worked at Essex Historical Colonial Village, where she has to dress and act like she lives in colonial times. Although she has at least somewhat enjoyed it in the past, this year, things aren't going so well. For starters, her ex-boyfriend, whom she still has feelings for, has gotten a job there as well. And, every year the teens who work at Essex and those who work at the nearby (as in, across the street) Civil War Reenactment place have an after-hours War, with pranks and such that have a tendency to get a little out of control. Chelsea is supposed to be one of the leaders of Essex's war effort, but that gets a little complicated when she starts to maybe fall for one of the Civil Warriors, which is a definite no-no.
I felt like the War was a little bit over the top (maybe just because I wouldn't invest that much time or energy in that type of pranking) and some of the secondary characters were a little too flat--and annoying--but other than that, I really liked the book. Chelsea was a good narrator, and the historical reenactment theme was a fun twist. There's some language and a little making out (side tangent: it seems like in a LOT of books lately, teens are moving really, really fast with their physical relationships...which is probably realistic to a certain extent, but I can't help but wonder if it's a little blown out of proportion.)