*I received a copy of One Pink Line from the author, Dina Silver in exchange for an honest review.
It’s finals week of her senior year, and Sydney’s in the middle of the hardest test – Spanish – when she realizes she hasn’t had her period. She gets to Wal-Mart before closing and buys a pregnancy test, hoping for one pink line that will tell her she’s not pregnant. Instead, Sydney sees two fuschia lines – one reminding her of her drunken one-night stand with one of her best friends and the other shaming her and reminding her of her loyal boyfriend Ethan.
Grace, on the other hand, is just a teenager, a taller-than-average teenager, but a hormonal, growing, moody teen all the same. At nine, after a lecture on sex education, she realizes her dad, who married her mom when Grace was two, can’t be her real dad. Devastated, she is angry at her mom, the man who calls himself her dad, and her real dad – the man who wanted nothing to do with her, and her anger and confusion follow her for years.
One Pink Line by Dina Silver is a story of mother and daughter – Sydney and Grace – who they are and how they become the women they are now. But One Pink Line is also the story of Sydney and her mother – a mom who is exacting and unforgiving of Sydney, Sydney and her older sister Kendra who acts as a surrogate mother to her and a go-between for Sydney and their mother, Grace and her paternal grandmother and aunts. It’s a story of being a woman with all its implicit joys and pains and about the men we allow to be a part of that.
Because at its heart, OneÂ Pink Line is a love story. Ethan is good and kind and handsome, loving Sydney when she isn’t even sure who she is, but patiently biding his time. There’s no question of “if” for Sydney and Ethan, it’s a “when,” but that certainly doesn’t detract from the romance of One Pink Line. The absence of the will-she-or-won’t-she storyline allows it to be much more than just about romantic love. Family is central to the book, as is the question of who and what makes up family.
Plus, it’s funny, and funny always helps. When Sydney realizes her period is late, she tries to think back:
I remembered the last time I’d had it though, because I was trapped in an English Lit lecture hall with no panty liner, no tampon, and no break for an hour. As soon as the bell rang I sprinted to the bathroom, only to discover the tampon dispenser hadn’t been refilled since the turn of the century. It was a long, slow walk home with a wad of parchment-like toilet paper shifting around in my panties.
I laughed so hard at this. Industrial toilet paper. Gotta love it. Or when Grace realizes her dad can’t be her biological father:
I took her through everything I’d just learned, as though she didn’t know. “So how could he have come along two years after I was born?”
I’ll never forget the look on Nurse Goode’s face. I’d stumped the panel, I’d taken that lovely, unassuming woman who could dispense Neosporin faster than the speed of light, and rendered her speechless. She was frozen, instant-read thermometer in hand, but frozen nonetheless. “Maybe we should call your mom?”
One Pink Line is funny and sweet, and it’s perfect for the start of summer. Plus, it’s a great example of self publishing done right.