Marisa has never had a boyfriend and she wants one. She has never been kissed and she wants to be. It’s her sophomore year and she’s intent on resolviMarisa has never had a boyfriend and she wants one. She has never been kissed and she wants to be. It’s her sophomore year and she’s intent on resolving these issues. Her heart is set on Derek, but he already has a girlfriend. Nash, a guy she’s known since grade school and who lives three doors down from her, could be the one since he has feelings for her, but Marisa is so sure he is not her type. Will she have to go through another year of high school spending every Saturday night with her best friend, Sterling, or will she finally be dating?
Marisa is coping with an anxiety disorder, she finds out that her ‘normal’ family has problems just like other families and she becomes concerned about her hyperactive friend who has started seeking companionship online. This teenage girl has a lot going on but intense isn’t how I’d describe her sophomore year. For all of the problems Marisa was faced with this story wasn’t really filled with much drama. This was actually a cozy read for me - to the point chapters, good friendships, and a teenage girl learning what teenage boys are all about without any serious mental, emotional or physical abuse. It would have been nice if fifteen year old Marisa was focused on more important things other than finding a boyfriend, but that is the reality. There are girls like Marisa who are set on finding a boyfriend at such a young age (or maybe fifteen isn’t so young these days). I understood Marisa’s need for affection (kissing is as far as she went) and I was glad she found someone who genuinely cared about her.
I was disappointed with the choice Marisa’s mother made - parenting is about making sacrifices, that’s just the way it is. And parents of teenage boys sending a girl visitor up to their sons’ rooms? Not in my house. Derek – I won’t call him a typical teenage boy because all guys don’t play with girls’ feelings the way he did but he is proof that good looks aren’t enough. And Dirk (I wasn’t surprised when his identity was revealed) – teenage girls can learn quite a bit from what he had to say.
There is profanity, but not much, and God’s name is taken in vain, but not nearly as much as some young adult novels I’ve read. Or a few I thought about buying but changed my mind after leafing through them. People do this, I know, so I guess it was another way to make the characters believable, but this is something I am not comfortable with. God’s name is holy and should be handled with care.
Overall, I enjoyed this story. The mentions of John Mayer were nice since I really like his music and I like the author’s writing. Colasanti doesn’t waste words; her transitions are so smooth. Also, her characters are believable as well as the issues these young people are dealing with. I will read more of her work. ...more
Cindy Gibson was a freshman at Bluford High with a poor attendance record. She didn’t care about going to school, she hated her mother’s boyfriend andCindy Gibson was a freshman at Bluford High with a poor attendance record. She didn’t care about going to school, she hated her mother’s boyfriend and she was tired of being left home alone. All she wanted was a close relationship with her mother, but Lori Gibson was a woman who cared more about keeping a man than spending quality time with her daughter. So Cindy found the attention she craved elsewhere. Her friends told her to stay away from the sweet-talking guy she was interested in but she ignored their warnings and gave Bobby Wallace a chance. He wasn’t the same person he used to be, after all. Or at least that was what he claimed. Cindy was happy to have a boyfriend and she did things she wouldn’t normally do to please him. But then the guy she believed had changed for the better showed his true self. I felt for Cindy; especially when she kept trying to convince herself Bobby wasn’t who she knew he was. Sadly, she was so desperate for attention and affection that she ignored the warning signs of a potentially abusive relationship, and then made excuses for Bobby when he treated her badly. She had true friends in Jamee and Amberlynn but she didn’t seem to get that. I’m glad they didn’t let her attitude keep them from showing how much they cared about her. I liked Mrs. Davis (aka Grandma Rose). She had wisdom and love for people in her community and she was there for Cindy when her mother wasn’t; speaking kind words to lift her spirits and giving her sound advice. Jamee was a real good friend who cared about education and wanted Cindy to succeed in life. Harold Davis was a nice young man, and that wasn’t a surprise since he was raised by his Grandma Rose. And Bobby Wallace? Sadly, he was his father’s son. I noticed these cute little Bluford High novels in bookstores a while back and I’m glad I decided to buy this one. Someone to Love Me was a good story and it didn’t take much time to read it. Schraff sends messages about the importance of self-love (a lesson learned not only by teenage Cindy but her mother as well) and the dangers of drug use. There was also very little profanity and I really appreciated that - many young adult novels have way too much foul language. ...more
The Carver High School junior varsity dance team no longer has a captain, so a new one must be chosen. Indigo just knows she's the very best dancer anThe Carver High School junior varsity dance team no longer has a captain, so a new one must be chosen. Indigo just knows she's the very best dancer and believes Miss Martin could not possibly choose anyone other than her. But Indigo's ego is seriously deflated when her best friend, Jade, becomes the new captain. All of a sudden, Jade isn't her best friend anymore. Looks like Indigo needs to do a little self-examination and learn what it means to be a true friend. What will it take for Indigo to let go of the jealousy and treat her girl right? Tameka wants to go to college mostly because her mother didn't have a chance to. Tameka's boyfriend, Vance, is expected to attended college, expected to follow in his father's footsteps. These two young people have their plans for the future, but then one choice is made that changes everything. Will Vance stand by Tameka in her time of need? Or will he abandon her? I really liked Tameka and the close relationship she had with her mother. Her dad was a workaholic and that was unfortunate, but he did care about his family. Now, I didn't agree with the choice he and his wife made in Chapter 14. And the family secret that was revealed - Tameka's mom made a good decision but the victim should have been taken straight to the police station so she could press charges because there was somebody who definitely needed to be dragged away in handcuffs. I liked Vance sometimes and sometimes I didn't. Well, I didn't like some of his choices. I loved the conversation he had with his mother in Chapter 35 and I'm glad he learned from what she had to say to him. This was an entertaining, thought provoking read. The author shows how two people dealing with the same situation can see things so differently, can be affected so differently. I learned from Tameka and Vance's points of view. Most teenagers seem to think they're more mature than they truly are. It's not until they're forced to deal with certain issues that they realize just how much more growing up they have to do. The whole teen sex/teen pregnancy aspect in the story rings true - good job, Miss McKayhan. I also appreciate how the author deals with the issue of abortion. This is the first book in the Indigo Summer series I've read. Not often, but at times characters didn't speak naturally and how they were dressed was described quite a bit (young women with a love for fashion would probably appreciate this); tiny flaws in my opinion. I can't say I really know the characters and I certainly don't know all they've been through since Book One. In this book the author does mention things that happened before this story - which helped me to "get" certain things - so a person doesn't really need to read the first four to enjoy this one. Still, I plan to read Indigo Summer, Trouble Follows, The Pact and Jaded. Why? Mostly to find out about this Jeff Donaldson Tameka mentioned, to better understand Indigo (This girl seemed pretty conceited to me, but maybe I'm wrong), and to learn about Jades relationship with Terrence (I'm curious). The ending to this book was very touching and I look forward to reading the other books. ...more
Samantha McGregor is a teenage (sixteen, soon to be seventeen) Christian who has dreams and visions given to her by God. Her father understood her gifSamantha McGregor is a teenage (sixteen, soon to be seventeen) Christian who has dreams and visions given to her by God. Her father understood her gift and tried to help her understand it, but now he's gone; the parent who took her gift seriously died when she was twelve. Her mother isn't comfortable with this gift from God. In fact, she's not sure Samantha's ability to see visions is something God has anything to do with. Is Samantha weird or crazy or simply a vessel God is using?
There was quite a bit I liked about Samantha: She wasn't ashamed to carry her Bible to school and she even pulled it out of her backpack, opened it and read from it not caring what anyone thought. She did not hesitate to go to God in prayer when she needed help or someone else needed help or she had questions. She had no problem praying in front of peers who weren't Christians. Even though she wasn't sure she wanted this gift that she wasn't always sure how to use, she cared more about what her heavenly Father wanted. And finding a boyfriend wasn't her main focus.
It was nice to see teen characters praying with and for each other and the author did a good job showing the life of a young Christian learning how to develop her spiritual gift and how to trust God whenever she began to have doubts.
There was something that disappointed me. Like other Christian novels I have read, this one contradicts God's Word at one point: On page 36 is the sentence - Kayla actually used to be a Christian. There is no "used to be" in Christianity... And do not bring sorrow to God's Holy Spirit by the way you live. Remember, He has identified you as His own, guaranteeing that you will be saved on the day of redemption (Ephesians 4:30 New Living Translation). Once saved, always saved. A Christian's salvation is eternally secure. They may backslide or become stagnant in their spiritual growth or let distractions get in the way and start retreating instead of advancing in their Christian walk or whatever and I'm thinking God isn't pleased when this happens, but if they confessed with their mouths that Jesus is Lord and believed in their hearts that Jesus died on the cross for their sins and was raised from the dead, they are Christians and will always be.
Chapter one was fast-paced and I was eager to find out what was going to happen next but then things slowed down here and there. The story grabbed me more in some places than others so this book wasn't the page-turner I expected it to be but it was a good read and I do plan to read the remaining books in the series. ...more
Isaiah Luis "Manz" Martinez was born to a teenage mother, whose father disowned her not because she got pregnant so young but because she was carryingIsaiah Luis "Manz" Martinez was born to a teenage mother, whose father disowned her not because she got pregnant so young but because she was carrying a Mexican's child. Manz is Mexican and Caucasian. His father, Adres "Loco" Martinez, passed away and so did his half-brother, Gabriel. Now it's just him and his mother, Delores, and her man, Thomas, whose job as a truck driver takes him away from home a lot. Manz and his family don't have much to live on, so he does his part by taking on a summer job. Working at Darby Guest Ranch is tougher than he thought but nothing is more difficult than listening to the strange sounds and voices no one else can hear. Will Manz learn to distinguish what's real from what's not or will he allow the voices to destroy him? Jedediah (Jed) Parker isn't fighting a battle in his mind like his friend, but, just like Manz, he doesn't have the life of a typical teenager. This young man has a lot to deal with. He's more than a son and a brother; he's his mother and sister's protector, doing what he can to keep them safe from his abusive father. I bought this book because I wanted to see how the author dealt with a subject as delicate as schizophrenia. I decided I was going to take my time reading; absorb every word so I'd understand exactly what Manz was going through. I predicted a couple of things early on in the story, but only because I know this mental disorder can be hereditary and extremely difficult to live with. Something that occurred with the Parker family was unexpected and the thoughts tormenting Manz at that time saddened me. And the paranoia Manz experienced throughout the story was so cleverly written that at times I wondered if what was really was. There are teenagers, like Manz, who have way more to worry about than fitting in, getting good grades, etc. Their issues are much deeper and more frustrating because they have no control over what's going on. I sympathized with Manz, that's for sure, and my heart goes out to every single person who is struggling with this illness. Border Crossing is a well-written page-turner; definitely a must read!! **Parents-There is profantiy, but not much....more
Kara MacNeill disobeyed her father's strict rules so she could spend time with Jake Dodson. She chose Jake over her friends, thinking she was too matuKara MacNeill disobeyed her father's strict rules so she could spend time with Jake Dodson. She chose Jake over her friends, thinking she was too mature for them. She even broke a vow she had made with her friend, Mel, to please Jake, but he led her down the wrong path and she paid a price for wanting to fit in with him and the so-called popular crowd. There is so much I didn't like about this story. I felt so bothered after I read it and I was still bothered when I woke up the next morning. It screams pro-choice and doesn't give pro-lifers a chance. In fact, it doesn't say one positive thing about making the choice to give an unborn child a chance at life. I realize the story focuses on Catholic beliefs but not all pro-lifers are judgmental, insensitive extremist. The author does send the message that the choice to have an abortion isn't always an easy one - I can appreciate that- but even though Kara seemed to have mixed feelings before and after the abortion, I couldn't feel for a girl who chose to kill her baby because the pregnancy wasn't convenient for her. And her family bonds grow closer after the choice she made? So sad. I didn't expect to learn so much about Catholic beliefs and that was interesting, but they were all so concerned about the "rules" of the Catholic Church; no one was thinking about the "life" inside of this girl. Quite a bit of this story reads like an instruction manual. Buckley does have good writing skills and if Choices hadn't been so one-sided I may have liked it better. I don't know. ...more
Kayla has never met her father, Desmond, and she lives with her alcoholic mother, Marilyn. They've resided in many different places and now Kayla hasKayla has never met her father, Desmond, and she lives with her alcoholic mother, Marilyn. They've resided in many different places and now Kayla has to leave her boyfriend because her mom is ready to pick up and move again. Marilyn had her reasons for leaving Dallas and heading for New Mexico, but things didn't turn out the way she planned. Still, she decided to stick around a while, so she and Kayla made a little run down trailer their home. So-called relationships with certain guys helped Kayla to distance herself from the world she lived in and alcohol was her mother's escape. Once Marilyn settled in New Mexico, though, she did her best to make choices that would help her become a better person, took steps to improve her life, but Kayla wouldn't give her mother a chance. This girl was so hurt by what had happened in the past and the fear of it happening again made her suspicious of her mother's every move. Kayla did have to do things her mother should have been responsible for and that wasn't right. And, yes, Marilyn did slip as far as the drinking was concerned, but Kayla was too hard on her mother. She could have been more supportive, but she chose to hold her mother's mistakes against her and give her a hard time every chance she got. I understood Kayla's fears but I didn't like how disrespectful she was. Marilyn, a woman with her own issues, was trying to be a good mother (maybe she would have known how if her own mother would have treated her right) and it was obvious she loved her daughter. Kayla and Marilyn both made mistakes - like people do - and they both learned from their bad choices. This was a good story. ...more
Devon Sky Davenport: "The sky's the limit" is what her mother was thinking of when she gave her that middle name. "You'll be somebody for both of us,"Devon Sky Davenport: "The sky's the limit" is what her mother was thinking of when she gave her that middle name. "You'll be somebody for both of us," her mom would say. Devon didn't have the best childhood. Her mother, Jennifer Davenport, went from one man to the next and left Devon alone at times when she was way too young to be left at home all by herself. However, despite her upbringing, Devon did exceptionally well in school. At Stadium High she was a top student in Honors classes and a star on the soccer team. For a while it seemed she was living up to her middle name. But then Devon met a guy she liked and made a choice she immediately regretted. She had broken her rule not to engage in sexual activity; a rule she set because she never wanted to be anything like her mother. Devon was so disgusted with herself that when she found out she was pregnant she instantly went into denial. But a baby was growing inside of her and when she gave birth Devon did the unspeakable. As I read the first chapter I kept thinking, "This girl needs to be in the hospital to get medical treatment and then she needs psychiatric help." Devon was dazed from day one and totally lost and unaware of what was going on. She kept getting caught up in her thoughts when she needed to be paying attention. No matter how much she tried to block out the situation she was faced with, no matter how many times she took her mind back to past events to escape the present (a lot of flashbacks in this story), she was going to have to face the consequences of her actions. This girl didn't seem to comprehend why she had that first court appointment or why she was in juvenile detention. She was facing not one but four charges but she didn't get that she committed a crime. She was also a bit uppity at times, thinking she didn't belong in a place like Remann Hall because she was an exemplary student. Devon was intelligent, but emotionally she was seriously damaged. Thanks to her so-called mother (this woman who abandoned Devon more than once, wasn't even sure what kind of relationship she had with her daughter), she was a lost little girl at age fifteen. I felt bad for her when I found out about her upbringing, but I didn't feel good about her at all when it came to what she did. And the way she referred to her newborn as IT bothered me. But then Dr. Bacon's enlightening testimony helped me to understand Devon's state of mind. I liked Devon's lawyer, Dominique. I liked the courtroom scenes and appreciated the explanations of legal terms. I wasn't too crazy about Karma. She was a troubled girl and when she did what she did, I expected it. Many chapters in this book are lengthy with some containing more information than necessary (didn't need to know every little detail about Devon's period, for one thing). I would have liked to have learned more about what happened to the newborn (story was almost over when I found out) instead of everything that was going on at Remann Hall. There was quite a bit that was bothersome about this story, but, for the most part, it was an interesting read and I was glad Devon made the choice she did in the end. I also love the book cover; so creative! ...more
Sixteen year old Keysha Kendall doesn't get much love from her mother, Justine (she calls her by her first name). Her friend, Toya Taylor isn't a goodSixteen year old Keysha Kendall doesn't get much love from her mother, Justine (she calls her by her first name). Her friend, Toya Taylor isn't a good influence and her ex-boyfriend, Ronnie, doesn't want anything to do with her. More than anything she needs someone to care about her; someone to make her feel safe, loved and wanted. She finds that person when the father she never knew is located, but it takes her a while to realize it.
Keysha referred to herself as `troubled' and that was sad. I didn't see her that way at all. She was an intelligent girl who was angry and considering her circumstances she had every reason to be. She didn't have good judgment, though, when it came to picking her friends; she ended up in bad situations following after them. And it was a shame that she had a mother like Justine and a grandmother like Rubylee.
Don't judge a book by its cover - this is so true, yet I do it all of the time. With such an innocent looking girl on the cover of this book, I did not expect Keysha to use so much profanity. Actually, there is quite a bit of bad language in this story, not all of it coming from her mouth - words I can't stand to read or hear. I bought this book in support of Kimani Tru and because I took notice to five star reviews. I expected to enjoy the story. I can't say I totally disliked it; for me it was just okay. It was interesting in the beginning but I didn't like all of the profanity, especially coming from Keysha, and certain content turned me off . I did like Keysha's Grandmother Katie, a wise woman who gave her granddaughter good advice. And there are lessons to be learned about valuing oneself. ...more
Annabel Greene keeps her thoughts and feelings to herself; especially where her homelife in concerned since she doesn't want to add to the issues herAnnabel Greene keeps her thoughts and feelings to herself; especially where her homelife in concerned since she doesn't want to add to the issues her family is dealing with. Admiring fans may think this teen has it all together by what they see in her modeling shoots but, like any other human being, Annabel is far from perfect. When Annabel is put up on a pedestal she isn't happy with the attention and I believe that was because she was a genuinely humble young lady but also because she didn't feel worthy. Annabel had a secret - something she was holding inside and couldn't bring herself to tell. She learned to be more open with her friend, Owen ( a unique guy with a very unique taste in music), who taught her about honesty, but still it was difficult to confide in him. Unlike some girls who, sadly, blame themselves, Annabel knew what happened to her wasn't her fault. Still, the more time passed the more she worried about how her peers felt about what they thought they knew. Assumptions and miscommunication made Annable think she'd lost one friend when that wasn't the case at all. And then there was Sophie. She and Annabel were supposed to be best friends but when the incident occurred Sophie proved to Annabel that she wasn't a friend at all. Things weren't as they appeared but Sophie wouldn't give Annabel a chance to explain her side. I wasn't happy with Sophie's reaction to the situation but I felt for the girl. She believed what she wanted to believe because she was so needy for a boyfriend but deep down she had to know the truth about Will Cash. And Annabel - Something about Will Cash unsettled her but she ignored it. The message in this: Listen to your instincts, young ladies. Please! This is the second book I've read by Sarah Dessen and just like the first it was slow until about halfway through. Once I read page 251 I knew things were about to pick up and the story - although interesting to this point - suddenly became enjoyable and fast-paced. I'm on a mission now to find a book by this author that grabs me from the beginning. As for this one, it's another young adult novel where characters take the Lord's name in vain quite often (that will never be okay with me). The story has close to 400 pages with only 20 chapters. I don't like long chapters but I have to admit I would have liked the courtroom scene to be longer - more in depth, much more detail; that would have made it more interesting. This is a good story, though. The seriousness of eating disorders is addressed, characters grow and change for the better and I learned - or I should say I was reminded -that I'm not as good a listener as I could be. ...more
Seventeen year old Elaine (Lainey) Seifert lost her dad when she was three. She lives with her mother,Vivianne. LaSalle Rouge is a French-Asian-CalifoSeventeen year old Elaine (Lainey) Seifert lost her dad when she was three. She lives with her mother,Vivianne. LaSalle Rouge is a French-Asian-Californian restaurant that receives rave reviews from critics and Vivianne owns it. Lainey dreams of becoming a celebrity chef. There's no place she'd rather be than in the kitchen of her Mom's popular establishment and there's nothing she'd rather be doing than cooking. Food seems to be this young lady's life. Yes, it is definitely her passion. She loves to shop for it, loves to cook it and loves to share her edible creations with her peers; particularly her friends in the jazz choir at school. When Lainey's friend, Simeon, leaves town her passion fades. She's still cooking but now it hides her hurt, helps her to cope in a difficult situation and comforts her when she's stressed. But when she realizes Simeon isn't the guy she imagined him to be she regains her focus and is able to make choices to better herself and her life. There are many teen novels these days focusing on such serious topics that they could also be considered adult reads. A La Carte does not fit into that category. I see this as a book very suitable for a middle school reader. I'm thinking high school girls want to read something a little more deep and dramatic, but it would be a cozy read for the ones who can do without alot of drama; especially if they love to cook. I liked reading this book. I learned about foods I never heard of before and what I really liked was seeing a recipe in handwriting at the end of each chapter; some of them even have food stains - unique! ...more
FBI - Freaky Boys Incorporated. This is an exclusive fraternal group at Cross High and this so-called brotherhood is composed of juniors and seniors.FBI - Freaky Boys Incorporated. This is an exclusive fraternal group at Cross High and this so-called brotherhood is composed of juniors and seniors. Ian Striver wanted to be a part of FBI since he was in ninth grade and now he's one of the pledges going through the induction phase. There are a few challenges he needs to complete and one of them is to get a girl who isn't stylish or pretty to have sex with him. Ian has three weeks to make this happen and Kylie Winship is the plain girl his friend, Michael, chooses for him. Kylie isn't just plain looking, she's also a virgin. Ian didn't think he could ever care about a girl like Kylie, but even after their first phone conversation he begins to have feelings for her. And the more time he spends with her the stronger those feelings become. But his love for Kylie battles his need to fit in, which leads to choices he wishes he never made. Will he be able to fix things? Desiree and Tracy have their suspicions about Ian and warn their best friend, Kylie, to be careful. They don't want her to get hurt and only want to protect her. Kylie appreciates their concern but she's sure they don't need to worry about her: Ian is a nice guy. True, he doesn't act the same when his friends are around, but he always has an answer for everything when she has doubts. But she's been alone with him, away from his friends and the rest of the world, so she knows he's kind and fun to be with. And, besides, no guy has ever paid her as much attention as Ian or treated her so good. So, even though her instincts tell her something isn't quite right, she can't make herself believe Ian is the dog Desiree and Tracy think he is. It doesn't take long before this popular guy has her heart... and then he breaks it. Will she ever trust guys again? This book teaches valuable lessons to teenage girls in need of affection - do not ignore your instincts and losing your virginity should not be taken lightly; you really are worthy of true love. It also shows that no matter how cool some teenage guys appear to be, they also struggle with insecurities. I enjoyed Jason & Kyra by Dana Davidson and Played was just as entertaining. This author's stories are well-written, fast-paced page-turners! I love the believable teenage characters she creates and I am so ready to read more of her work. Parents: This young adult novel contains a bit of profanity and there is sexual content. ...more
Mina Mooney likes Craig Simpson and he has invited her to the Frenzy, a party the high school coach has for the varsity football team at the end of thMina Mooney likes Craig Simpson and he has invited her to the Frenzy, a party the high school coach has for the varsity football team at the end of the season. There's one problem, though. Mina can't date yet. Her parents only allow her to go out in groups. She has a pretty good argument against each one of her parents' rules, but she still might not be able to convince them to let her go. If she can't, she'll figure out how to get there without them knowing. And Mina's friends - Lizzy, JZ (Jason Zimms), Jacinta (Cinny), Kelly and Michael - some of them are dealing with their own issues. The description of this book gave me the impression that as far as Mina was concerned her story would be mostly about her and Craig Simpson. But Craig doesn't play as big a role as I expected him to. Mina spent a lot of time with her clique and a certain someone. There was much talk of sports (something I know very little about and have no interest in). I enjoyed the high school basketball game, though. The author did a good job with that scene. I always like it when parents or guardians play a big part in a young adult novel, especially when they're good, caring parents like Mariah and Jackson Mooney. Mina didn't appreciate their rules, but if they didn't love her they wouldn't have any. I was concerned for fourteen year old Kelly. It was nice that Angel (17) was respectful of her, good to her, but he was still a drug dealer and there's nothing good about that. Kelly didn't have a good relationship with her mother, Rebecca, and that wasn't good. In fact, her mother and stepdad weren't around much, but at least her mother did take time to give her good advice when she needed it. There were quite a few scenes that took place at high school, where most of JZ's problems came from. He made a bad choice that didn't affect only him, but I was glad he did the right thing in the end. Michael and Todd were interesting characters. And Jacinta- She lived with her Aunt Jacqi in the Woods (Suburban neighborhood) but she came from Pirates Cove (low income housing). This girl couldn't win for losin'. When she was with her friends in The Woods, her boyfriend, Raheem, who was from The Cove, couldn't handle it and when she supported Raheem she was treated as if she was being disloyal to her friends in The Woods. Jacinta was stuck in the middle and it was really her story that kept me turning the pages. I really felt for this girl and I just had to know how things were going to turn out for her. Some of the IMs and text messages slowed my reading down a bit, but that's only because it's all new to me. It took a little while to figure out what some of the abbreviations meant just like it did at times when these young people spoke: nabe - neighborhood, `tude - attitude, hist - history, `rents - parents/ There is teen slang I have heard, but never any of these. This book had me checking a teen slang dictionary, but I didn't mind the extra work. I liked Don't Get It Twisted. I give it 3.5 ...more
Kendra Williamson is fourteen years old and she attends North Bronx High School for Arts and Communications. She loves to draw houses and floor plans;Kendra Williamson is fourteen years old and she attends North Bronx High School for Arts and Communications. She loves to draw houses and floor plans; a skill that will lead to a promising career in the future. She's not focusing a whole lot on future plans, though. The main thing that's on her mind, what she wants more than anything, is to spend more time with her mother, Renee. Kendra lives with her Nana, Valerie. Renee, who gave birth to Kendra in ninth grade, missed ten years of her daughter's life while she finished high school, then college and then grad school. Now she's graduating from Princeton with a PhD and Kendra believes she will finally have a "real" mother. A mother who will be around for more than just minutes at a time and will care about the things she cares about. A mother who will want her. But, sadly, once Renee is back in the Bronx the neglect continues so, desperate for attention, Kendra makes a choice that surprises even her. A choice she regrets, but repeats even though she feels so bad about herself after the first time. I felt so bad for Kendra. The girl goes out there and makes choices she probably wouldn't have made if somebody would have taken the time to talk to her and, most of all, truly love her. Her mother obviously loved herself more than she loved her daughter. Renee was only concerned about what she wanted and didn't give Kendra a second thought. I was so glad Kendra's Nana cared enough about her granddaughter to raise her. Valerie loved Kendra the best way she knew how, but her way was a bit controlling and smothering. And Kendra's dad, Kenny? Well, it seemed he was still trying to find his own way in the world. The author was not playin' when she penned this novel. Teenagers are way more mature, way more knowledgeable these days and Coe Booth did not hold back when she wrote about the sexual experiences of her young characters. The things fourteen year old Kendra did really shocked me. And Nashawn Webb, the guy she was with, my goodness, this boy knew as much as a grown man! I was saddened by that, but the reality is there are young people who are growing up way too fast. There is one thing I learned from reading this book that I did not care to know, and there was quite a bit of profanity to overlook, but this was a good story. And, like I mentioned before, Coe Booth was not playin'! So, if you can handle the truth about the choices "some" young people are making when it comes to sex, you might want to read this book. ...more