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Reviewed by Cecelia Hopkins for Readers' Favorite
Forever Sheyanne: A Sweet YA Romance by K.L. Penaluna is a charming, clean romance. The story commences as Sheyanne, known familiarly as “Shy,” notices a new student in the class. Shy feels an instant connection with Lanny Romero and pursues him when he attempts to bolt out of the classroom. A friendship is established and Lanny walks her home that evening. When Lanny heads off to his home in an unexpected direction, Shy realizes there is a mystery to solve. She questions him, and he admits to living with an uncle who works for the forestry department. Shy is invited to visit and enjoys hours with Lanny’s spirit animals, including a horse, bear, fox, and owl. The delightfully imaged friendship continues to deepen and takes a romantic turn. The final challenge occurs when Lanny is required to choose between exploring his heritage and staying with Shy.
Forever Sheyanne by K.L. Penaluna is a wonderfully inclusive teenage romance. Shy is a blonde girl of unspecified European-American extraction while Lanny is of Native American descent. The romance between the adolescents demonstrates the way families and cultures can come to understand each other and relate respectfully. The characterization is developed with insight and empathy, including many details aimed at edifying the reader and broadening cultural understanding. I especially liked the idyllic time spent together in the natural environment, and the way they took responsibility for their wellbeing. I enjoyed reading a narrative that was prejudice-free and only depicted cultural division relevant to the plot. This book provides a truly positive reading experience and creates the expectation of future adventures.