Nice Try, Jane Sinner

Lianne Oelke. Clarion, $17.99 (432p) ISBN 978-0-544-86785-7
After being expelled from high school, 17-year-old Jane Sinner is taking courses at Elbow River Community College in order to complete her graduation requirements. Jane, who has never met an idiom she doesn’t want to change (“You’re meowing up the wrong tree”), also hopes that Elbow River can provide some needed anonymity. Eager to move out of her family home—where her parents believe that prayer, youth group, and Pastor Ron can fix everything—she signs up to participate in an online reality show at school. Jane enlists the help of castmate and potential love interest Robbie to devise a plan to win, but not before learning a few things about herself. Debut novelist Oelke has created a complex and entertaining heroine in Jane, who narrates in sharp-edged, caustically funny journal entries. Oelke sidesteps writing about the more difficult aspects of mental illness and recovery—Jane has little interest in addressing past actions readers gradually learn about, and her therapist exists only in her mind—instead keeping this a lighter, snarkier comeback story. Ages 14–up. Agent: Brooks Sherman, Janklow & Nesbit. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 11/06/2017
Release date: 01/09/2018
Genre: Children's
Open Ebook - 368 pages - 978-1-328-82884-2
Paperback - 432 pages - 978-0-358-09756-3
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