Tabitha and her four best friends all wear purity rings, symbols of the virginity-until-marriage pledge they made years ago. Now Tab is fifteen, and her ring has come to mean so much more. It’s a symbol of who she is and what she believes—a reminder of her promises to herself, and her bond to her friends.
But when Tab meets a boy whose kisses make her knees go weak, everything suddenly seems a lot more complicated. Tab’s best friend, Morgan, is far from supportive, and for the first time, Tabitha is forced to keep secrets from the one person with whom she’s always shared everything. When one of those secrets breaks to the surface, Tab finds herself at the center of an unthinkable betrayal that splits her friends apart. As Tab’s entire world comes crashing down around her, she’s forced to re-examine her friendships, her faith, and what exactly it means to be pure.
Tabitha and her friends all wear purity rings. It’s what links them in their friendship as they’ve all made their promise to God to not have sex until marriage. It’s always been a no-brainer for Tabitha, at least, but when one of their circle breaks their promise, they find themselves divided and for different reasons. Placed in the middle of all this, Tabitha has to figure out what being a true friend means, and learns how your beliefs can affect your friendships.
For the most part, I enjoyed this book. It took a while for me to really get into it, and there are times when the narration loses focus on the story itself, but I’m glad I pushed through those first few chapters to get into the grit of the story because it was something I felt deep inside and accessed a little bit of my own 15/16 year old self. Right away when Tabitha was placed in between her friends I knew she was doing the right thing by not judging that one friend for her actions, and instead tried to understand without giving in on her own beliefs.
Everything seemed to happen at once for Tabitha in this book – her first boyfriend, her friends falling apart, trying to figure out where she really stood in her beliefs, and what it means to be a real friend. It’s a lot more drama than I went through in high school as a teenage Christian, but I definitely see how it tore Tabitha apart inside and how she was unsure of what to do, especially since her parents weren’t exactly believers. Honestly, she handled it all much more maturely than a 15-year old normally would, but of course still had her moments and that’s where I saw a lot of my younger self in her. Wanting to do the right thing, but hating to lose friendships along the way, but also knowing that God works things out for the best for those who love Him. It’s a hard lesson, but it’s one of the best.
So, reading this was also a little trippy for me because for the first time ever, I share my name with the main character. The “T” in T.K. does, in fact, stand for Tabitha. I go by T.K. on my blog for a number of reasons, but being ashamed of my name is NOT one of them. I love my name and the fact that it’s so rare (unless it’s on book twitter or bookstagram) but again, I’ve never read my name in a book before (expect for the Bible, obviously). Anyway, that was the weirdest thing for me in the entirety of this book was reading my own name when family or friends were talking to the main character (and writing this review).
Overall, this was a great book and one that I wish I had read when I was a teen (this book was published the year I graduated high school, go figure). Though I would have liked it a lot more if the narration had been a bit less sporadic and if it hadn’t dragged like it did in the beginning. Other than that, I definitely recommend this book, especially to Christian teens out there looking for books they can relate to.
Rating: 3 stars