**spoiler alert** This is really a 3.5 star review. I liked it enough to read in a day, but not quite 4 stars worth. It was a simple read really, but**spoiler alert** This is really a 3.5 star review. I liked it enough to read in a day, but not quite 4 stars worth. It was a simple read really, but also very predictable and way too cliche for me at the end. For me the biggest draw back was how neatly it all wrapped up at the end with everyone winning their dream scholarships and attending their dream college. They even sort of ignored how Mandy was doing however many months later with her father being in prison for tax fraud. That whole chapter in her life basically ended with her mom telling her that her school fund was unaffected. Ok, but she still has a father in jail and suddenly 6 months later her life feels perfect because her and Eric still see eachother?
It was a good book about high school sweethearts and the different choices girls make regarding sex, including their regrets of it. Even if it comes about because someone created a scholarship that required purity as a requirement. I will say I'm glad it didn't turn into a preachy book with them all becoming instant born-again virgins and having no issue about changing their attitudes about sex. ...more
It's rare that an author makes the third and final book in a series the best of them all. This final book had so many twists and turns as it wrapped tIt's rare that an author makes the third and final book in a series the best of them all. This final book had so many twists and turns as it wrapped things up that I was actually disappointed when I hit the final page! I could keep reading about Rhine's world forever if she'd write them! Don't think for a minute here that new twists and wanting more means that there were a ton of loose ends. DeStefano does a great job at concluding the story for the major characters and leaves you fully understanding that this is the end. But that doesn't mean we won't keep yearning for more. ...more
This is a well written book for children who are preparing to learn a second language. It covers all of the basics regarding linguistics and shows howThis is a well written book for children who are preparing to learn a second language. It covers all of the basics regarding linguistics and shows how the world's languages are related. Target audience: 6th grade+...more
Fans of Laurie Halse Anderson will be expecting a novel addressing a controversial topic and they will not be disappointed. Her newest book captures P Fans of Laurie Halse Anderson will be expecting a novel addressing a controversial topic and they will not be disappointed. Her newest book captures PTSD in a very real fashion. Main character, Hayley, is a high school student who has spent the last 5 years of her life on the road with her father running and hiding from her father’s demons. He finally decided to move back home and put her in normal high school. True to her form, Anderson is able to write from the teenage perspective with such accuracy, you would swear she was still a teenager herself.
We start out thinking that Hayley is mostly “strange” because of her father’s severe PTSD. She is forced to play the “adult” and take care of him. We soon learn that her life hasn’t been peaches either. This is mostly because the woman she loved like a mom (her step-mom) walked out and abandoned her after her father returned from the war. She has harbored a lot of resentment towards her to the point that when she starts to make her way back into their lives once again she instantly feels betrayed once again. A few good (and reluctant) heart-to-hearts reveal why she really left and why she is back again.
Because she never knows what will happen with her father, she never brings anyone home and is reluctant to even make friends. Of course there is her old friend, Gracie, that she played with before they started living on the road, but Gracie’s home life has some secrets of it’s own. She kind of reluctantly falls in like with Finn and their growing relationship is pretty much the feel-good part of the novel.
I will admit I was leery of the writing style as soon as I figured out that the POV was going to switch between characters, and to make things worse they weren’t even characters of the same age, it was Hayley and her father. However, I found myself longing for more snippets into his brain because I personally have no experience with PTSD and his parts were eye-opening to some of the daily demons people face.
Overall I was very pleased with her newest book. While I was admittedly worried that I would find it juvenile and not as good as her previous novels (mostly due to the fact that I’ve grown myself). I was almost afraid to pick up this book because I didn’t want to ruin one of my childhood favorites by being disappointed. However, I found it good enough that if I hadn’t read her other books, I would have sought them out.
I give the book 4 rather than 5 stars, because I didn’t find it quite as emotional or impressionable as Speak, plus sometimes it felt like no one had anything good going on and that it was just being a Debbie-downer instead of trying to look at the positives....more