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Playing It Cool

3.15 of 5 stars 3.15  ·  rating details  ·  88 ratings  ·  15 reviews
“I always know what I’m doing.”
So says 18-year-old Sebastian Montero, who is famous around town as a problem solver of the subtlest kind. Want a date with the girl of your dreams? Bastian can make it happen. Have a friend threatening suicide? Baz can talk him off the ledge. But as popular as Sebastian is, no one really knows him. Thanks to his intricate network of favors a...more
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published May 23rd 2006 by Random House Books for Young Readers (first published June 2nd 2005)
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Community Reviews

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Angela C
I think I liked this book, but I’m not really sure.

I’ve spent the entire afternoon trying to decide how I feel about Playing It Cool, and that’s the closest I’ve come to a conclusion. The plot is interesting, and I had a hard time putting the book down, but there’s something about this novel that just feels off.

Take the main character, for example. In theory, Sebastian Montero should be my dream protagonist. He’s a schemer, his mind always working a mile a minute. He can solve just about any pro...more
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Jocelyn Pearce for

Sebastian Montero has a reputation around town as a problem solver. Any problem you've got, Sebastian has a way to fix it. He doesn't do it just out of the goodness of his heart, though; it's all part of the complicated network of favors, debts, and problems that he's organized. He's calm and in control in the middle of his domain. He knows how it all works.

Along comes another problem. This one directly involves Sebastian's friend, Jeremy. Jeremy h...more
Cameron Mcintosh
Sometimes, you just do too much for you friends. Popular Sebastian Montero runs a network of favors for his entire town, getting involved deep into the drama of others. He can make anything happen, for a price, and even goes as far as saving lives. Sebastian realizes things maybe have gotten out of hand when he decides to take his best friend Jeremy to meet his father for the first time. They decide to switch identities so Jeremy doesn’t get emotionally involved, but things get crazy when Sebast...more
Maybe this book was trying just a little too hard to be cool.

It was a little too smooth, the interlude chapters took a while to feel natural, and there was just something missing. Maybe this book just isn't my cup of tea.

I didn't really follow the evolution of the main character, who is a bit of a trickster, which made the conclusion less than satisfactory. I'm not sure that the way his faults were portrayed if they were really faults at all so the whole resolution at the end just didn't feel ge...more
Tiana Pearson
May 26, 2008 Tiana Pearson rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: any and everyone
Recommended to Tiana by: no one
Sebastian is just a teenager just trying to keep playing it cool. he goes around helping people and doing everyone favors. But when he goes with his best friend, Jeremy, to visit his friends father who walked out on him, it becomes harder for him to keep playing it cool. While pretending to be Jeremy, and Jeremy is pretending to be him, he starts to feel connected and realizes he wished his father did not leave his family too. As things start to mix up, he does not know that Jeremy's father has...more
'Playing It Cool' was an interesting read about a boy who spends his life in a web of deals and favors. This works for him until he meets a man named Dromio, who proceeds to turn his life upside-down. The descriptions in this book were marvelous- you could see every little detail of the characters' lives. The writing was a little choppy at times, so you might want to find a time to read this when you can focus. It is, overall, a read I'd recommend for people looking for a light summer-y read wit...more
Fast and easy read with an intricate story. The supporting characters are so real, it feels like you know them and that they aren't just archetypes. Sebastian Montero, the main character, is a fast talking con artist with a heart of gold. The epilogue left me a bit unsatisfied because I think that his character devolved a bit and he just ends up as a passive person.
I just couldn't get into this one. I just didn't find the character (a cool smooth teen with a network of people that owe him favors) compelling enough to stick with the story. Maybe I'll give it a reread sometime, but for now, it's back to the library tomorrow.
Apr 28, 2007 Meredith rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Teen boys
Sebastian and his best friend Jeremy take a road trip to meet Jeremy's father for the first time. After only a few days, Sebastian begins to suspect that Jeremy's father may be his own as well.
Mysteries are my favorite; to me, this book had many "hidden" details that caught me by surprise. I really enjoyed this book when I was in high school.
This book started out pretty good story line was going well but the ending killed it for me. I hate open endings.
I'm not finished reading this book but over all a good book a little edgy some language but otherwise I love it.
Really dramatic in the end, kind of confusing though.
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