A Love Story Starring My Dead Best Friend is a coming-of-age/coming-out/road trip/romance/dead-best-friend novel, and it is absolutely gorgeous. Cass' best friend Julia dies, and Cass decides to take a cross-country bicycle trip to commemorate her. As Cass travels, her trip becomes a way for her to learn about herself, figure out her feelings about Julia and her friends, and develop the independence and confidence she never had before. Upon her return, however, she learns that her friends are staging the totally awesome ninja musical that Julia wrote before her death, and that they've cast her arch-enemy Heather in the lead role. While Cass struggles with her feelings for Heather--at first, those of loathing, but later, something much different, she also comes to terms with Julia's death. This book alternates between chapters describing Cass' summer road trip and those unfolding in the present, making it possible to see how much Cass has grown, and how her summer experiences help her become the girl she is in the following school year. The prose is beautiful, perfectly describing feelings of grief, alienation, heartbreak, and infatuation.