Ooh, Tease by Amanda Maciel was a really challenging, thought-provoking book about bullying. It takes a concept that's been done before and looked at...moreOoh, Tease by Amanda Maciel was a really challenging, thought-provoking book about bullying. It takes a concept that's been done before and looked at it differently and I thought it was a really interesting approach.
This is the story of Sara, a teenage girl who is facing criminal charges for her part in the bullying that leads another classmate, Emma Putnam, to commit suicide. Tease is told in two parts: The months leading up to Emma's suicide in which we see Sara and her best friend Brielle harass and bully Emma relentlessly both in person and online and we also see several months of Sara's experiences as she's dealing with lawyers and her therapist leading up to the trial following Emma's death.
I found reading Tease to be very difficult at first. The first 100 pages or so really made me angry as the main character has absolutely no remorse at all for her actions, she's adamant she didn't do anything wrong ... and once I got over my rage at how self-centred Sara is, I realised that Sara's attitude about her part in things might have been one of the author's points and I began to look at the novel in a much different way. And while Tease felt really uncomfortable reading and while I didn't agree that Sara was blameless, I could sometimes see where she was coming from and how there were more sides to this story than just two mean girls picking on the new girl.
The thing that stuck out for me the most is that both Sara and Brielle lack any form of empathy. Sara sees the world at the start of this novel only able to view how things affect HER and she doesn't seem to see that the things she says and does have an impact on other people, and in this case specifically how her comments and behaviours have had an big impact on Emma's life and her well-being. I think that's pretty key to Sara's behaviour and attitude.
Another point that Sara raises throughout Tease is that she believes she's not at fault any more than everyone else who has ever said mean things about Emma or people who call each other out on the sexual identities in a negative way. I found this really interesting. Because we can see in Sara's interactions with her friends, and in particular, Brielle, that words like 'slut' and 'whore' and other derogatory terms are thrown around with abandon and Sara sees this as acceptable behaviour because it's all just joking around and not serious and everyone says these things and everyone has to put up with this sort of language and name-calling anyway. So taking this one step further, she doesn't quite get the distinction between 'friendly' banter and the extreme bullying that takes place regarding Emma.
And the fact that Sara doesn't know this shows a real lack of education from parents and teachers and the whole education system, surely. I found it really upsetting that the (fictional) high school this all takes place in supposedly has an anti-bullying policy in place but it is so ineffective that is laughable ...and also heart-breaking. Because as Sara returns to school after Emma's suicide Sara faces some of the same isolation and name-calling that Emma went through and it's all so realistic but also very sad because what does bullying someone who has bullied others actually achieve? I think that Emma and Sara are both let down by the system. And that also furthers Sara's point that her behaviours reflect a socially constructed environment in which bullying and name-calling are the norm and nobody quite gets where the boundaries or limits are?
While I never actually liked Sara as a character, I did like the way that Amanda Maciel paints her. Sara isn't a bad person: she deserves second chances and happiness just like the rest of us and I think that was also an important message. Sara did terrible things but that doesn't mean that she's a terrible person or that she needs to carrying around the 'bully' label forever.
I found Tease ultimately to be incredibly thought-provoking and interesting. I think it's a book that is challenging to read and will provoke strong reactions amongst its readers. I think that's really good and I hope it opens up different conversations about bullying and prevention and where to go from here. (less)
What even is it about surfing books? I read one and I absolutely crave more. Such was the case with Blue by Lisa Glass. What thrilled me about this bo...moreWhat even is it about surfing books? I read one and I absolutely crave more. Such was the case with Blue by Lisa Glass. What thrilled me about this book in particular, aside from the awesome surfing is that it is set around an actual English seaside town and not Hawaii or the US or Australia, but somewhere closer to home. Let's have more of that, okay?
And I really quickly fell for this story and these characters. At parts I found it a little surprising that we hear so much about secondary characters and their side stories, especially when it came to Zeke's family and the things they get up to but it all made sense in the end. I had no idea until I turned that last page that is the first book in a series! I'm really quite excited to read more about Iris and her surfing experiences.
So, Blue tells us this story spanning one momentous summer with our main character, Iris. She's really down in the dumps at the beginning of Blue, having just broken up with her ex-boyfriend, Daniel, and she's finding it hard to move on. Her best friend, Kelly, drags her off to a yoga class and there Iris meets Zeke, this hot surfer dude and they really hit it off.
These first few chapters of Blue were so wonderful to read, especially as it's really awkward and there are some embarrassing moments as Iris and Zeke first interact. It was obvious how much Iris fancies the pants off Zeke. And to be honest, so did I right from the start. He's gorgeous and talented and it seemed pretty clear to me (not so much to Iris) how smitten with her he is too.
But there are so many things standing in the way of their relationship. First off, Iris is totally unsure what Zeke feels or what he wants from her. Then she finds out that actually he's this big-time surfer who travels the world surfing the hottest spots and being sponsored. And there's also Iris's conflicted feelings about her ex-boyfriend and the fact that she might not yet be over him...
I found this book to be pretty surprising. I loved meeting Zeke's family. His brothers, his parents, his nana, they were all lovely and I just wanted to be part of that family unit. There was an incredibly touching scene involving the three Francis brothers and Nanna that had me nearly about to cry. And at the same time, I really felt for Daniel. He really cares about Iris in his own way but makes so many mistakes trying to win her back. It was a very emotional ride.
But, of course, the thing I really did love the most about this book was the surfing. Blue takes us through all sorts of different aspects of surfing. From learning to surf, surfing as a fun hobby, the competitive nature of trying to get into more pro circles and also that of someone at the top of their game in surfing. I found it all fascinating. I loved hearing about the different lingo and different things to consider and be aware of, the different boards and places to surf. Honestly, I lapped up every single detail of surfing in this book. It was all so very satisfying.
Blue was such a fun and romantic, summery beach read. I really recommend that you pick this one up and fall in love with surfing all over again! (less)
I really loved Tilly's Promise by Linda Newbery. I thought it was a really sweet and emotional book and I was very surprised by how much I felt for th...moreI really loved Tilly's Promise by Linda Newbery. I thought it was a really sweet and emotional book and I was very surprised by how much I felt for the characters despite this book being quite short. I even had tears in my eyes at several different points of the story!
Tilly's Promise is one of the first books by Barrington Stoke that I have read but I will certainly be picking up more especially after the strength of this book. I loved both the characters and the story. Linda Newbery did a great job of pulling me into the WWI setting with some nice (but brief!) historical detail. I think the cover for this book is absolutely beautiful and very in keeping with the story line, especially as Tilly, Harry, and Georgie send each other postcards throughout the book.
It's the story of Tilly, a young volunteer nurse that is trained and sent off to France to help out in the war effort. She has a sweetheart, Harry, who is a soldier. When Tilly's younger brother, Georgie - a gentle, good-natured boy with learning difficulties, is being sent off to war as well, Tilly asks Harry to keep Georgie safe. That promise proves difficult to keep as Tilly and Harry both witness death and injury as soldier and nurse.
I had no idea there were no restrictions in place to protect young people with learning difficulties like Georgie who was more than capable physically but not necessarily mentally or emotionally. I also really liked that Tilly, as a nurse, comes to empathise with the German soldiers during her shifts as well and another emotional scene comes when Tilly makes her own well-intentioned promise to a soldier that she finds herself not able to honour.
Barrington Stoke books are aimed at struggling, reluctant or dyslexic readers. Tilly's Promise is a really engaging story of World War I. I really enjoyed the shorter chapters, the interesting story line and how emotionally invested I became in the characters and of Tilly and Harry's relationship. Really recommended!(less)
Never was there a book more charming and fun than Murder Most Unladylike by Robin Stevens, this first in the Wells and Wong Mystery series. It's funny...moreNever was there a book more charming and fun than Murder Most Unladylike by Robin Stevens, this first in the Wells and Wong Mystery series. It's funny, I was sort of teetering on the fence about whether or not I wanted to actually read this book as it is aimed at a slightly younger than YA audience. And then I kept hearing positive things about it on Twitter and suddenly I thought, 'oh, why not?' I am so very happy that I acted on that whim.
Because Murder Most Unladylike is such a lovely little book. I loved everything about it. From the upbeat cover, the fact that there is a MAP and a character guide at the start. I love the fact that this book is set in a boarding school in the 1930s. I especially loved the voice of our main character, Hazel Wong and her friendship with Daisy Wells.
At the start of the book, we are introduced to both Hazel and Daisy and how they met and formed their Detective Agency, that up until now was only gathering clues and solving petty mysteries. And then one day Hazel stumbles across the dead body of Miss Wells, the science mistress and Hazel and Daisy go into overdrive gathering evidence and suspects and in the meanwhile nobody else seems to realise that Miss Wells is even dead.
Honestly, this book. I completely fell in love with Deepdean School For Girls and with Hazel and Daisy. I wanted to go back in time and attend this school, with these girls and to skip about and go on bunbreaks. BUNBREAKS. And I also really loved the way in which Hazel and Daisy go about solving this case. They put together a timeline of events, a suspect list, gather evidence and alibis and all in this clever and roundabout way by talking to the other students and teachers. It was all very interesting to learn of the different news and gossip about everyone involved in Hazel and Daisy's lives. It also felt really believable that these two girls could achieve what they did in the ways that they did it.
I loved Hazel's character the most. I love that she's from Hong Kong and we see a little bit of the way she is treated differently by the other girls. I also loved that she's a little plump and some of her comments and observations involving biscuits and buns made me howl with laughter and just love her that much more. Her friendship with Daisy is a complicated one and it was really interesting to see the formation of their friendship from Hazel's perspective and how that friendship is tested during this murder investigation.
I absolutely loved this book and highly recommend that you read it. I'm so excited to read more in this series! Bring on the next Wells and Wong Mystery! (less)
I've had a copy of Huntress by Malinda Lo on my TBR pile for such a long time. I can't think now why I waited so long before tackling this wonderful n...moreI've had a copy of Huntress by Malinda Lo on my TBR pile for such a long time. I can't think now why I waited so long before tackling this wonderful novel? Huntress is set in the same world as Ash but many centuries before it and is filled with great characters, an exciting adventure and a world filled with the detail and influences of Chinese traditions. I found it very easy to relate with these characters and with this interesting fantasy world.
Huntress is the story of a band of travellers who are on a quest to visit the mythical Fairy Queen who might have answers to why the crops are failing, why the seasons have stopped changing and why strange things are happening and why dangerous creatures have started appearing in their lands.
On this journey are Taisin, who is studying to become a Sage. She is inexperienced in dealing with the otherworldly but is also someone who holds great promise and skill who is able to see visions of what the future holds. With her is Kaede, the daughter of the King's chancellor and who is somebody who has no skill in becoming a sage but who is competent in other things. She goes on this journey in order to escape her father's expectations of her and the prospective marriage for political gain. With them is the Prince and three guards.
I really loved the adventure that this band of people go through during the course of the novel. Things don't run very smoothly but it is the way in which these events shape the characters and how they react to them that made everything much more interesting. I really enjoyed reading the way in which Taisin was trying to gather more information and evidences about the weird occurrences on their trip and also the way in which Kaede began learning to protect herself and the others from the guards. Their goal of meeting the fey queen and solving the issues that have affected the world they live in was always the number one priority for Taisin, Kaede, and the others and the feelings that crop up between the two girls becomes and secondary story line. I liked that about this book. That this lovely, slowly built-up romance appears in the book but that character development and the main plot always continue as the main focus.
Having said that, Kaede and Taisin's relationship is utterly sweet and I was really rooting for them throughout. A lot of barriers to their relationship are brought up initially - rules of becoming a Sage and also the pressures of making political alliances - but I really was hoping for the best for them both!
Huntress was a wonderful and adventurous fantasy novel filled with the great characters and relationships. I found it quite easy to believe in the world-building and the situations and problems they had to face. I will continue to look forward to reading anything else by Malinda Lo...(less)
After reading Please Ignore Vera Dietz and now Ask the Passengers, A. S. King is quickly becoming one of my new favourite authors. What I loved so muc...moreAfter reading Please Ignore Vera Dietz and now Ask the Passengers, A. S. King is quickly becoming one of my new favourite authors. What I loved so much about this book is how philosophical it became. I loved Astrid's thoughts on love and equality and respect especially and how she connected different events with her family, her friends and her schoolmates at school together to form really interesting conclusions about these different things. I thought it was a really interesting book and it was definitely a book that made me sit up and really think about things.
Ask the Passengers is a story about Astrid, a teenage girl living in a small town. At the start of the story, it's pretty apparent that Astrid's family isn't one that is very conducive to opening up about Astrid's thoughts and feelings, especially about her feelings for Dee, a female co-worker at Astrid's weekend job. Astrid's mother is a bit overbearing and her dad is very laid-back and uninterested and Astrid pretty much dismisses her younger sister. And instead of confiding in them or with her best friend, Astrid spends the majority of her time in the background staring up at the sky and sending love to the planes that pass by overhead because she feels her love is going to waste in her own life.
Like I said, I really enjoyed this story. I found the whole situation with Astrid and her family to be really interesting to witness as throughout the story Astrid begins to question her place in the family and to question the conditions of her family's love towards her and to also demand more respect. Their family dynamic was one of my favourite parts of the book and I was really glad to see that there was more love and support from them than Astrid had known of or believed.
I was less certain of Astrid' friendships. Her best friend, Kristina, was all kinds of pushy and demanding and I wasn't sold on the strength of Astrid and Kristina's friendship at all. Kristina is gay but still in the closet and drags Astrid to a local gay bar regularly but seems to bail on Astrid when things get tough. While Astrid is still pondering the definition of being gay and trying to process what it means to have feelings for another girl, the people in Astrid's life seem to have so many demands on her. To have definitive answers, to be out, to tell her parents, to tell the world, to go further in their relationship than she's ready to go. It's all a little bit much for Astrid and I really felt for her throughout.
This is a very thinky book, with a lot of philosophical questions thrown in and even the embodiment of Socrates himself towards the second half of the book. Sprinkled throughout Astrid's narration are excerpts from the passengers in the planes that Astrid is sending love and questions to. I get what the author was trying to do with these passages - highlight the fact that what we send out to the universe has an effect on other people - but about halfway through the book I started skimming the passengers stories as I felt like it was taking away from Astrid's story and her perspective.
Overall though, I really enjoyed Ask the Passengers and I found it really interesting to read Astrid's story and see how she faces the different relationship problems that she has in her life from her parents, her sister, her best friend, her girlfriend and from other people in her life. I love how many different versions of love that Astrid comes across and how she deals with each of them. I really liked this one and can definitely recommend it.(less)
Gold Rush by Jordan Lynde is an ebook that is being published this month by Random House...moreThis review was originally published at Fluttering Butterflies
Gold Rush by Jordan Lynde is an ebook that is being published this month by Random House. I find it really interesting that books such as this, which was originally published on Wattpad by the teenage author, are attracting the attention of mainstream publishers. I can't say that I loved Gold Rush, but I did enjoy parts of it, especially the diversity of sexualities within the book.
Gold Rush is the story of a girl, Iris, who is charged with showing around new classmates, Noah, Luke and Rian at the private school they all attend. Iris is class president and really focused on her studies and doesn't need any distraction. And she also seems to be the only person in her school who doesn't lose her head and sensibilities around the new boys ... as they are the members of hot new boy band, Gold.
While I did feel like there needed to be more character development and something else to the story besides Iris and her friends' interactions with the members of Gold, it was still a fun book to read and I read it in a very short period of time. A lot of the story revolves around Iris and her two best friends and how they become friends and love interests to the three Gold band members. We do see a little bit of the fan-frenzy that Gold face on a daily basis and we do see a little bit of them trying to be normal teenagers doing normal things. I thought it was great that the tables are turned slightly in the second half of the book where it's Gold who become a little starstruck by another band. Overall though, it was a little bit too cheesy and slightly immature for me. It's a bit too much 'OMG, you want to buy me a donut?' in parts and there's very little conflict.
What I did enjoy about the book the most though is the fact that there is a character who identifies as bisexual. He's open about it and accepted by his peers and because of the reactions this character has had about his sexuality, it pushes another character to come forward and tell people that he is gay. I don't come across enough bisexual characters in YA, so this story line really kept me reading despite my problems with the rest of the story. (less)
Don't Even Think About It by Sarah Mlynowski is SUCH a fun book to read! I'd read Sarah Mlynowski's previous book, Ten Things We Shouldn't Have Done,...moreDon't Even Think About It by Sarah Mlynowski is SUCH a fun book to read! I'd read Sarah Mlynowski's previous book, Ten Things We Shouldn't Have Done, and thought it was really cute so I was very much looking forward to more stories by the same author. I was definitely not disappointed with Don't Even Think About It.
This book centres around a core group of high school students in the same homeroom who have all received a flu jab. Flu jab? Sure, you'd expect some minor side effects but these 20 or so students are in for a much bigger surprise when one of the side effects turns out to be telepathy.
Honestly, I hope that I'm not going to be really tedious in this review but this book is so much fun. I love the premise. It's about a bunch of teenagers who* can read minds.* I think what's great about this book, besides how awkward and hilarious some of the situations that these characters get themselves into, is that the telepathic powers that they all get only seem to amplify the drama and secrets and emotion that most teenagers go through. I think everyone at some point in time would really want to know what other people are thinking, especially if it concerns you. And while a lot of fun is had and I really loved to see how one particular character grows in confidence there are also other situations in which telepathy might not be such a good thing (like when you can hear your parents having sex!).
There is plenty of drama and secrecy going on here. There's also rifts in friendships and romantic relationships. There are some tricky moral dilemmas about test taking, but there are some rather heartbreaking truths to be learned about family and I love the way some of the characters really thrive with their new found powers and for others, telepathy seems to be the biggest curse of all.
I was a little bit unsure about the structure of the novel beforehand and I think it's worth mentioning briefly. The perspective of the book is told from the point of view of all the students affected by the flu jab collectively. I thought perhaps this hive mind perspective might mean that there was less emphasis on separate characters and that I would struggle to connect to individuals. But Sarah Mlynowski really surprised me with this. Despite everyone telling the story, it does focus on certain characters as they go through more emotional story lines with the added commentary from some of the others. I was surprised but even in this way there were definitely characters that I was rooting for throughout and story lines that really got to me.
I think this book has a lot going for it. I was so amused and horrified by so much of the book that it kind of took me by surprise how emotional it actually is. By far my favourite story lines involved the Tess who had a crush on her best friend, Teddy ... only to find out that he mostly thinks about his crush on a different girl. And also the Mackenzie who cheated on her lovely, long-term boyfriend, Cooper, and was wracked with guilt for weeks before he found out.
I'm reliably informed that this will be the first book in a series and I am incredibly excited to read more! I thought this book was told with a lot of humour and heart. It was a very quick, fun read but with some added depth to it as well. I really connected to all of the characters and I think it'll be great to see different sides to some of the other characters that we only briefly meet in this book. Bring it on! (less)
I enjoyed reading Played by Liz Fichera. It's a companion novel to Hooked which I had read and also enjoyed last year. Out of the two books, I think I...moreI enjoyed reading Played by Liz Fichera. It's a companion novel to Hooked which I had read and also enjoyed last year. Out of the two books, I think I preferred Hooked, but Played was quite sweet too. I think Sam was a wonderful main character and I really do love that this series of books features Native Americans in such a prominent way. I'd have loved to have discovered these two books as a lonely, bookish Native American myself.
While I don't think you necessarily need to have read Hooked before you read Played, I do think things would be slightly less confusing. In case you haven't read Hooked (and look away now if you don't want spoilers) the main characters of that book were Fred and Ryan, who ended up in a romantic relationship despite not getting along at first. Fred had a good friend, Sam, another Native American who lives on a reservation with her who admitted that he loved Fred during Hooked. She lets him down easy but their friendship isn't quite the same afterwards.
Now Played tells the story of Sam (Fred's former best friend) and Ryan's little sister, Riley. Sam and Riley are worlds apart until on a school trip Sam and Riley get separated from everyone else and Sam rescues Riley from falling off a cliff. They talk and somewhere in between being rescued and getting to know Sam, Riley comes up with this crazy plan to win the heart of Fred despite being happily involved with Riley's brother.
I really adored Sam, I thought he was lovely. I thought his feelings for Fred came through really strongly and I loved the development those feelings took throughout the book. Sam, when we first meet him, is kind of closed off from everyone else and he doesn't really do anything to let him connect with other people outside of his small circle. It was nice to see him grow as a character. It felt like he needed someone like Riley to shake things up and force him to expand his boundaries. He was the reason I liked this book as much as I did!
I couldn't quite connect with Riley as much, though. Mostly because she's hell-bent on breaking up a relationship that didn't need breaking up. I think she lost sight of something in her quest to 'pay back' Sam and didn't quite realise how much she was hurting everyone involved. I kind of got Riley's rebellious attitude and the fact that she does some things because of how her family react differently to her than to the behaviour of her older brother. I like that that plays into this story line but also at times I really didn't like Riley as a character.
Overall, an interesting story. It was sweet and heart-felt and I loved seeing how the relationships progressed throughout the story, both of the new characters and also the older characters we'd met in Hooked. (less)
Ooh, exciting and emotional. Stronger first half with the character development that loses it's way with the addition of the other mermaids. Really lo...moreOoh, exciting and emotional. Stronger first half with the character development that loses it's way with the addition of the other mermaids. Really looking forward to reading more. Full review soon.
I was really quite intrigued to read Deep Blue by Jennifer Donnelly. The author's previous work included Revolution and A Northern Light, which either was nominated or won the Carnegie medal. Deep Blue is a big departure from these historical based stories and instead we have the first book in a four book series about mermaids. Mermaids. There is something pretty intriguing about oceans and the unknown but I can't say that mermaids have ever really captured my attention... until now.
First off, I think the cover for Deep Blue is gorgeous. I love the colours and the general tone. And if you haven't already seen the book trailer for this book, I recommend that you seek it out and watch it as I think the visuals are just stunning.
For me, the first half of Deep Blue is stronger than the second. We start the story with our main character, Seraphina, introducing herself and also this world that she lives in. She's at the start of an important ceremony in which she must prove herself worthy to be her mother's heir and also become betrothed to Prince Mahdi. I really loved the first few chapters of the book as we learn more about Sera and see her interacting with the other mermaids and things. I think her personality and her character really shines through right from the start.
I really felt all of Sera's anxieties at the start of this novel. She's worried she's not good enough for her mother, or Prince Mahdi, or good enough to rule in her mother's place. And to make things even more stressful, she's been having these nightmare visions of an ancient evil that is coming and through them she's been getting clues that reveal her own importance and involvement in stopping this.
I really felt like there was a lot of great characters and relationships at the start of Deep Blue. It felt exciting and addictive and I was very quickly pulled into Sera's head and her world. Her fight with Mahdi really broke my heart as did everything that happened at the ceremony. My heart was in my throat, I was on the edge of my seat. It was all so tense and wonderful. Which is why it was disappointing that that same level of paciness and tension did not continue to the second half of the book in which Sera travels to gather the other mermaids needed to battle the evil thing that is threatening the waters and everything living in it.
While I can see that being the first book in the series there has to be lots of groundwork put into place, I thought that the second half felt a little limp and lacking in comparison to what I thought was a great and strong opening. I wanted more from the second half and I can only hope that some of the childish mermaid terminology is dropped in the future books in the series and that we see more character development from the other mermaids. Though I definitely want to know more about Sera and Mahdi. I almost cried at the end of Deep Blue when this wasn't resolved!
All of my criticisms aside, I really enjoyed Deep Blue and I'm looking forward to reading more in the series. I can definitely see a lot of potential in these characters, in this world and in this story line. I'm looking forward to it. (less)
I Predict A Riot by Catherine Bruton very quickly became one of my favourite reads of the year so far. It's a very emotional read, very thought-provok...moreI Predict A Riot by Catherine Bruton very quickly became one of my favourite reads of the year so far. It's a very emotional read, very thought-provoking and has some wonderful characters and relationships between them. I really loved reading this book and had tears in my eyes by the end of it.
First off, I loved the structure of the book which is told from the perspective of our main character, Maggie, as she is secretly filming the events of her neighbourhood. The chapters are all based around specific scenes that Maggie has filmed in different locations around the main street, Coronation Road. I Predict A Riot was inspired by the London Riots in 2011 and there were quite a few similarities between this story and actual events.
And at first, I was reading this book and comparing this story and its characters with what I remembered happening three years ago. The area that Maggie and her friends are in is an area of London with a big class divide. There are families like Maggie's (whose mum is the local MP) who attends a boarding school and live in luxury alongside families like Tokes' whose mother works several jobs to pay the rent on a poky bedsit. There is also a large gang culture that is rampant, and our third main character, Little Pea is a 12 year old boy who has been caught up in the Starfish Gang and cannot see a future for himself outside of it. I Predict A Riot tells us this story of events that are leading up to the London riots including allegations of police brutality and protests but one of the things that I loved so much about it is that Catherine Bruton gives us this story without judgement. We witness characters saying and doing questionable things for their own reasons but each of those reasons are laid out and are true to Maggie, Tokes and to Little Pea. I loved that about this book.
Because while I started this book making the comparisons to the rioting, I finished this story knowing definitely that while the riots were the background for this story, I Predict A Riot is really a story about a hope for change and it is a story about friendship and about being true to yourself and making the decisions that you can live with. I loved the story arc for all three of the main characters. I loved how each of them are very different and have different sets of principles and beliefs in what is right and wrong but that these principles are tested in really difficult situations. Some characters surprised me by the mistakes they made, the strength of their convictions and about the ways in which they changed throughout the story.
I was really surprised by this book. I was surprised by the depth of my feelings for Maggie, Tokes and Little Pea. I thought Catherine Bruton did an amazing job of pulling me into the narrative of this book and really connecting me to that of these three characters. It was really interesting to see different sides to this story from three characters with such wildly different backgrounds and the way in which their stories overlapped. I really highly recommend this story! (less)