Ozzy

Richard E. Allen, Author, R. E. Allen, Author
Richard E. Allen, Author, R. E. Allen, Author Dell Publishing Company $13.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-440-50146-6
Reviewed on: 06/01/1989
Release date: 06/01/1989
High school senior Ozzy doesn't want to stay stuck in Capitol, Colo., his whole life. So he earnestly applies himself to living by the guidelines described in a mail-order course, Famous Authorship --such as dressing distinctively, writing in his notebook and tossing off bons mots . But what Ozzy's course doesn't prepare him for at all is real life. When his mother is killed in a car accident, he hops a bus for New Orleans, determined to ship off on a freighter bound for Paris, where all the real writers lived. En route, Ozzy meets up with Maysie, a gritty Southern girl who isn't impressed by his pronouncements about literature, and is downright insulted by his references to her in his notebook. Arriving in New Orleans, Ozzy thinks he's at a dead end when he finds that his dreams of Paris can't be realized. But clear-eyed Maysie (whom he'd dismissed as low-class and uneducated) sets him back on track, headed toward home. In his first YA novel, Allen creates a protagonist who is endearingly naive--like many teens--without being a buffoon. The author nimbly contrasts romantic fantasy with reality, leaving readers satisfied that the latter is always much more desirable. Ages 12-up. (June)
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