Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Girl, Going on 17, Pants on Fire--Sue Limb

Title: Girl, Going on 17, Pants on Fire
Author: Sue Limb
Pages: 233 p
Publisher: Delacorte Press
ISBN: 038573218x

This is the 3rd book in this series and just as funny as the first two. Jess Jordan really knows how to get herself in trouble--after spending the summer worrying about her boyfriend cheating on her because of some miscommunication, she lets yet another miscommunication break them up the day before school is to begin. From there her school year just gets worse and worse.

Jess is a funny likeable character. Girls who liked the Louise Rennison books will be attracted to all of Jess's mishaps and her Britishisms but will like Jess even more because she's not as mean-spirited as Georgia Nicholson is. Jess is just a confused teenage girl with delicate self esteem who would like the world to revolve around her but knows it doesn't. I heartily recommend this entire series to middle and high school girls alike. Boys probably won't be as interested.

Reading: Among the Hidden--Margaret Peterson Haddix
On My Nightstand:

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Cruise Control--Terry Trueman

Title: Cruise Control
Author: Terry Trueman
Pages: 149 p.
Publisher: HarperTempest
ISBN: 0066239605

I read Stuck in Neutral many years ago, but just re-read it for my middle school book group. I remember the book having a big impact on me the first time I read it, but reading it while being pregnant was even more of an emotional experience. I continued on with Cruise Control hoping I would get some sort of closure. Cruise Control is set in the same time period at Stuck in Neutral but it's told from older brother Paul's point of view. Some of the events from SIN are mirrored in CC and it gives a more complete picture of the McDaniel family home life. Paul is a loving brother, even if he can't express it, and his difficulties of being a sibling to a "vegetable" are realistically portrayed. This is NOT a sequel. It's not necessary to have read SIN first, but the experience of reading CC is so much more complete and meaningful when you have read SIN.

I was hoping for closure--for some clue as to what the father was going to do with Shawn (the developmentally disabled "vegetable") but Trueman doesn't give it up. Once again the ending can be interpreted in more than one way. People who are more positive are given a glimmer of hope that maybe Shawn and Paul's Dad will be interrupted and rethink his plan (to end his child's suffering). Those who aren't quite so positive can see it the opposite way--that Paul will be too late.

CC is not quite as strong as SIN but that's just because it's told from a different point of view. I shouldn't say it's not as strong. It's not as painfully moving as SIN was, but it's still a great book.

(side note--I finally got approved for the new blogger, so now I have labels! woo-hoo!)
Reading: Nothing yet
On My Nightstand: Saline Spray and tissues

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