Cindy G.'s Reviews > Catalyst

Catalyst by Laurie Halse Anderson
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Jan 27, 10

bookshelves: young-adult
Read from January 16 to 24, 2010

Even though I was exhausted, I stayed up until 1:00 AM reading Catalyst. I was all ready to put the book down, then something happened, and there was no way I could stop reading until the end.

Catalyst tells the story of Kate, a senior chemistry geek, who is determined to attend M.I.T. She is so fixated on going to the school of her deceased mother that she applied no where else and did not tell anyone. At the outset of the book, Kate is desperately waiting for a letter from the prestigious Cambridge school. Kate is the kind of girl who not only feels like she needs to be perfect in school, but also has to take care of everyone around her. She cares for her pimply younger brother's asthma and folds her minister father's laundry. When the next door neighbor's house becomes uninhabitable after a fire, and the neighbors have to move in with Kate and her family, the chemical reaction referenced in the book's title is set into motion. That reaction is further complicated by the fact that Kate receives that letter from M.I.T. that she was waiting for.

I could really relate to Kate's character as she struggles to deal with the demands and expectations of the people around her combined with her own feelings and expectations for herself. Furthermore, the plot was fast-paced and exciting. I have not yet read a book by Laurie Halse Anderson that I didn't love, and Catalyst is no exception.

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01/16/2010 page 0
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