The Black Sheep

Yvonne Collins, Author, Sandy Rideout, Author . Hyperion $15.99 (348p) ISBN 978-1-4231-0156-7

Reality TV and environmental activism give a trendy spin to Collins and Rideout’s (the Vivian Leigh Reid series) cheery fish-out-of-water romance. Selected to star in a reality show called “The Black Sheep,” Kendra swaps her sterile, rule-bound Manhattan existence for the Mulligan family’s hippie-ish and chaotic household in Monterey, Calif., where she spends nearly every waking moment being trailed by a TV crew. Despite this lack of privacy, Kendra manages to keep secret her prickly-at-first romance with the Mulligan’s eldest son, Mitch, an aspiring marine biologist. Partly to impress Mitch, but mostly because she finds herself truly caring, Kendra becomes involved with a sea otter preservation group, and even organizes a demonstration to safeguard the animals’ habitat. Meanwhile, the show’s megalomaniacal producer Judy, in search of ever-higher ratings, manufactures a conflict that results in the viewing audience voting to decide if Kendra should divorce her parents. In a neat summation of just how unreal reality TV can be, her alleged desire for emancipation is broadcast to the nation in a statement composed entirely of quotes taken out of context. Kendra’s bright and breezy first-person narration moves things along at a rapid clip and the larger-than-life personalities and plot are balanced by her heartfelt reflections on family and fame. Ages 12-up. (May)

Reviewed on: 05/28/2007
Release date: 05/01/2007
Genre: Children's
Paperback - 348 pages - 978-1-4231-0160-4
Hardcover - 348 pages - 978-1-4287-4665-7
Paperback - 352 pages - 978-0-7490-4092-5
Open Ebook - 156 pages - 978-0-7490-4097-0
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