FROM E TO YOU

Chris d'Lacey, Author, Linda Newberry, Author, Linda Newberry, Joint Author
Chris d'Lacey, Author, Linda Newberry, Author, Linda Newberry, Joint Author and Linda Newbery. Pocket/Archway $4.99 (208p) ISBN 978-0-7434-2285-7
Prebound-Other - 202 pages - 978-0-613-85076-6
Hardcover - 224 pages - 978-0-439-01301-7
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Some 100 miles separate the home towns of British teenagers Annabelle and Guy, but the two bond quite quickly through the e-mails that compose the narrative of this refreshing, inventively plotted novel from a British team. "I'm sending this because my Dad and your Dad think we ought to be e-mail pen-pals," writes Guy in his inaugural cursory missive, which provokes several caustic responses from the brassy Annabelle. But before long the two let their guards down, as each affectingly divulges details of recent traumas (his mother died of cancer, her cat had to be put to sleep) as well as the frustrations of daily life (his former girlfriend begins dating his best friend, she loses the lead role in her school play to her nemesis). The authors add diverting dimension by weaving into their tale strands about the shared past lives of their parents, which become intricately—and quite amusingly—tangled as the e-mailers' imaginations run wild. Occasionally, the duo spontaneously zaps through cyberspace with correspondence that seems too polished and witty to have been created by a 14- and 15-year-old. Yet d'Lacey (intriguingly, a male writing in Annabelle's voice) and Newbery (who contributes Guy's voice) have shaped two very distinct and likable characters and a cleverly composite tale. Kids will happily log on. Ages 12-up. (July)

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