Notes from the Blender

Trish Cook and Brendan Halpin. Egmont USA, $16.99 (240p) ISBN 978-1-60684-140-2
Cook (Overnight Sensation) and Halpin (Shutout) coauthor an amusing if slightly overstuffed story about two families that collide amid marriages and misunderstandings. Classmates Declan and Neilly are from opposite ends of the social spectrum. Declan is an angry yet sensitive loner, obsessed with death metal, video games, and sex (especially as it pertains to Neilly), who still blames himself for his mother's death in a car accident. Neilly is popular, but has just been dumped by her jock boyfriend and learned that her mother is pregnant and engaged—to Declan's father. Throw in Neilly's father's impending commitment ceremony with another man and Declan's escalating feelings for his stepsister-to-be, and the authors offer ample opportunities for drama. Both Declan and Neilly provide sarcastic and often funny perspectives on their rapidly changing lives, and while Declan's persona can feel somewhat forced ("Oh, for the love of SuicideGirls. Neilly Foster just said 'three way,' "), the teens become allies and develop in ways they didn't expect. The swift plot and sympathetic characters result in a moving story about embracing change. Ages 14–up. (May)
Reviewed on: 03/28/2011
Release date: 05/01/2011
Genre: Children's
Ebook - 240 pages - 978-1-60684-186-0
Paperback - 229 pages - 978-1-60684-227-0
Portable Document Format (PDF) - 240 pages - 978-1-5124-0154-7
Ebook - 240 pages - 978-1-5124-4081-2
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