An enjoyable and diverse story highlighting friendship, entrepreneurship, and perseverance.

READ REVIEW

FACE THE MUSIC

From the Startup Squad series , Vol. 2

The Startup Squad discovers that selling merch for their favorite rock band is more complicated than it seems.

Harriet Nguyen lives life in the fast lane. She loves creating spectacular outfits every day, adores reptiles, and is the youngest of four siblings. She has three older brothers—Sam, Joe, and Larry—who are also in a band together called the Radical Skinks, named after their favorite reptile. When Harriet accidentally breaks Larry’s guitar and dooms the band, her friends quickly come up with a scheme to keep the band together and help them compete in Battle of the Bands. Together, the four middle schoolers come up with the idea of selling Radical Skinks T-shirts at a concert to raise money for a new guitar. Though the idea seems simple at first, the girls quickly realize they have underestimated how much effort and teamwork it will take to reach their goal, especially with Harriet’s act-first-think-later attitude, which results in disastrous mishaps. Filled with flawed characters and moments of growth, including lessons on trial and error, practicing customer service, and learning from mistakes, this drama-filled, fast-paced, entertaining read places friendship and hard work at its heart. The characters are cued as the following: Harriet and her family are Vietnamese, Amelia is white, Didi is South Asian, and Resa (the focus of series opener The Startup Squad, 2019) is Afro-Latinx. Practical tips on entrepreneurship and a Q&A with a kid entrepreneur appear in the backmatter.

An enjoyable and diverse story highlighting friendship, entrepreneurship, and perseverance. (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: May 5, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-250-18045-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Imprint

Review Posted Online: March 15, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2020

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Telgemeier’s bold colors, superior visual storytelling, and unusual subject matter will keep readers emotionally engaged and...

GHOSTS

Catrina narrates the story of her mixed-race (Latino/white) family’s move from Southern California to Bahía de la Luna on the Northern California coast.

Dad has a new job, but it’s little sister Maya’s lungs that motivate the move: she has had cystic fibrosis since birth—a degenerative breathing condition. Despite her health, Maya loves adventure, even if her lungs suffer for it and even when Cat must follow to keep her safe. When Carlos, a tall, brown, and handsome teen Ghost Tour guide introduces the sisters to the Bahía ghosts—most of whom were Spanish-speaking Mexicans when alive—they fascinate Maya and she them, but the terrified Cat wants only to get herself and Maya back to safety. When the ghost adventure leads to Maya’s hospitalization, Cat blames both herself and Carlos, which makes seeing him at school difficult. As Cat awakens to the meaning of Halloween and Day of the Dead in this strange new home, she comes to understand the importance of the ghosts both to herself and to Maya. Telgemeier neatly balances enough issues that a lesser artist would split them into separate stories and delivers as much delight textually as visually. The backmatter includes snippets from Telgemeier’s sketchbook and a photo of her in Día makeup.

Telgemeier’s bold colors, superior visual storytelling, and unusual subject matter will keep readers emotionally engaged and unable to put down this compelling tale. (Graphic fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: Sept. 13, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-545-54061-2

Page Count: 256

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: July 2, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2016

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

A deftly told story that dramatizes how Danes appointed themselves bodyguards—not only for their king, who was in the habit...

NUMBER THE STARS

The author of the Anastasia books as well as more serious fiction (Rabble Starkey, 1987) offers her first historical fiction—a story about the escape of the Jews from Denmark in 1943.

Five years younger than Lisa in Carol Matas' Lisa's War (1989), Annemarie Johansen has, at 10, known three years of Nazi occupation. Though ever cautious and fearful of the ubiquitous soldiers, she is largely unaware of the extent of the danger around her; the Resistance kept even its participants safer by telling them as little as possible, and Annemarie has never been told that her older sister Lise died in its service. When the Germans plan to round up the Jews, the Johansens take in Annemarie's friend, Ellen Rosen, and pretend she is their daughter; later, they travel to Uncle Hendrik's house on the coast, where the Rosens and other Jews are transported by fishing boat to Sweden. Apart from Lise's offstage death, there is little violence here; like Annemarie, the reader is protected from the full implications of events—but will be caught up in the suspense and menace of several encounters with soldiers and in Annemarie's courageous run as courier on the night of the escape. The book concludes with the Jews' return, after the war, to homes well kept for them by their neighbors.

A deftly told story that dramatizes how Danes appointed themselves bodyguards—not only for their king, who was in the habit of riding alone in Copenhagen, but for their Jews. (Historical fiction. 9-12)

Pub Date: April 1, 1989

ISBN: 0547577095

Page Count: 156

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin

Review Posted Online: Oct. 17, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 1989

Did you like this book?

more