Books by Brendan Halpin

A REALLY AWESOME MESS by Trish Cook
Released: July 23, 2013

"Funny and fast-moving—but too much of the healing rings hollow. (Fiction. 14-18)"
A group of teens at a live-in institution for troubled young people bond, pull off a caper and overcome their issues in an amusing but overly rosy two-narrator tale. Read full book review >
TESSA MASTERSON WILL GO TO PROM by Emily Franklin
Released: March 27, 2012

"An accessible, if not original, take on coming out and overcoming adversity. (Fiction. 12 & up)"
In a story unapologetically ripped from the headlines, a small-town high-school student starts a furor by announcing her intention to wear a tuxedo to prom and bring a same-sex date. Read full book review >
JENNA & JONAH'S FAUXMANCE by Emily Franklin
FICTION
Released: Feb. 1, 2011

"Love, American style. (Fiction. YA)"
After a successful first season of Jenna & Jonah's How to Be a Rock Star, teen idols Charlie and Aaron (aka Fielding Withers to his fans) are given an ultimatum: "fall in love or fall apart." Read full book review >
NOTES FROM THE BLENDER by Brendan Halpin
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Oct. 26, 2010

"Dec's compassionate Aunt Sarah, whose Unitarian Universalist youth group becomes a refuge for both teens, brings yet more wit and kindness to this sweet, emotional, but never hokey mix. (Fiction. 14 & up)"
Two stepsiblings-to-be narrate this charming, funny and surprisingly touching family story in alternating chapters. Read full book review >
SHUTOUT by Brendan Halpin
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Aug. 17, 2010

"Amanda's quandary will resonate with readers as she tackles timely topics such as friendship woes, teen drinking and family life with admirable aplomb. (Fiction. 12 & up)"
Fourteen-year-old Amanda is on the cusp of many changes at the outset of her freshman year. Read full book review >
THE HALF-LIFE OF PLANETS by Emily Franklin
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: June 15, 2010

"There's melodrama here and some clichéd scenes, but these are high-school students after all, and readers will find themselves cheering for the proper alignment of these star-crossed lovers. (Fiction. YA)"
"I am not a slut," says Liana Planet (pronounce pluh-net) in the attention-grabbing first line of this fine romantic comedy. Read full book review >
I CAN SEE CLEARLY NOW by Brendan Halpin
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 24, 2009

"What could have been an interesting period piece about the creative process turns out more like an episode of Behind The Music: Schoolhouse Rock!"
A young group of musicians toiling on a series of educational songs for television get into that '70s groove, in this tepid rock 'n' roll melodrama from Halpin (How Ya Like Me Now, 2007, etc.). Read full book review >
FOREVER CHANGES by Brendan Halpin
FICTION
Released: Sept. 8, 2008

"An excellent next read for teens who enjoyed Jenny Downham's Before I Die (2007). (Fiction. YA)"
A teen with cystic fibrosis learns that her limited life can hold infinite potential. Read full book review >
HOW YA LIKE ME NOW by Brendan Halpin
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: May 8, 2007

"An interesting exploration of serious issues, presented in a lighthearted tone. (Fiction. 12-14)"
Fifteen-year-old Eddie's mother is forced into rehab and his father has died, leaving the young man adrift without adult support. Read full book review >
DEAR CATASTROPHE WAITRESS by Brendan Halpin
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 13, 2007

"A lukewarm affair."
Maybe rock-'n'-roll will never die, but the two love-scorned exes in this romantic comedy certainly wish it would. Read full book review >
LONG WAY BACK by Brendan Halpin
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Jan. 10, 2006

"How the Ramones (and rock's original anti-heroes, The Who) save the day, is the pleasing twist to this sweet Nick-Hornby-meets-Graham-Greene tragi-comedy from Halpin (Donorboy, 2004, etc.). "
Boy meets God, boy gets girl, boy loses girl and God, all to a soundtrack by Dee Dee Ramone. Read full book review >
DONORBOY by Brendan Halpin
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 17, 2004

"Crisp and coherent but still something of a soap opera: obvious, two-dimensional, not wholly convincing."
A debut novel from Halpin (Losing My Faculties: A Teacher's Story, 2003, etc.) shows a teenager growing reconciled to the death of her mother as she comes to know (and live with) her father for the first time. Read full book review >
LOSING MY FACULTIES by Brendan Halpin
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Aug. 19, 2003

"The ups and downs of the teaching profession may leave Halpin feeling like a basketball, but thankfully he isn't full of hot air."
After detailing his wife's struggle with breast cancer, the author of It Takes a Worried Man (2002) turns to a more cheerful topic: his life as a high-school teacher. Read full book review >
IT TAKES A WORRIED MAN by Brendan Halpin
HEALTH & MEDICINE
Released: March 12, 2002

"An affectingly honest account of what it means to watch helplessly as a loved one suffers: a timely addition to the literature of disease."
A husband's frank, conflicted recollections of coping with his young wife's stage-four breast cancer. Read full book review >