Mary's Reviews > Notes from an Accidental Band Geek

Notes from an Accidental Band Geek by Erin Dionne
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's review
Oct 19, 2011

bookshelves: to-read, crone-6th-realistic

School Library Journal (October 1, 2011)
Gr 6-9-Elsie has her career path all mapped out: she will become the principal French horn player for the Boston Symphony Orchestra, just like her father and grandfather. The 13-year-old's life has revolved around this single focus for years. It hasn't left much time or space for learning to read people or navigate social situations. All that changes when she grudgingly joins marching band and, against all odds, falls in love with it. This self-absorbed, socially awkward narrator who celebrates a good day by cranking out Beethoven on the stereo will present a few hurdles for many readers. The best potential audience will be kids who have at least a passing knowledge of music. Those who get past Elsie's obsession with the French horn and the fact that she turns snappish under pressure will be sure to identify with the scenes of mortal embarrassment that are the hallmarks of young teen life. Who wouldn't want to die on the spot if dubbed "Zombie Chicken" by a whole group of people you just met and with whom you'll be spending the next nine months? While this novel isn't for everyone, it has humor, heart, and a touch of romance that will provide ample fodder for booktalks.-Faith Brautigam, Gail Borden Public Library District, Elgin, IL
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