HARLEY’S NINTH by Cat Bauer

HARLEY’S NINTH

Age Range: 14 & up
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KIRKUS REVIEW

October 9 is a red-letter day for Harley. Now living with her biological father in New York City, it’s the day of the gallery opening for her winning artwork, and also tech rehearsal for the opening of the play for which her father is the set designer. Opening with a description of sex with Evan, whom she met in Harley Like a Person (Winslow Press, 2000), Harley really starts her day purchasing a pregnancy test kit. Her father shows up before she’s out of the store and they head to a John Lennon exhibit and then on to Lenape, N.J., Harley’s old home town. They manage a chance encounter with every important character from the previous story and Harley’s earlier life. Part wish-fulfillment and part whine, Harley’s story is hard to digest. She is both incredibly self-centered, and, by her own report, incredibly talented. Relationships between characters loop back onto each other in improbable ways. Fortunately, before going over the top, Bauer has Harley stop demanding that others make her the center of the universe, and naturally, that’s when they fall into step and support her. The worry about being pregnant, at a time when she’s ill-equipped to handle parenthood, threads through each conversation, providing an ironic twist as Sean and Harley’s own relationship develops. (Fiction. YA)

Pub Date: Feb. 13th, 2007
ISBN: 0-375-83736-1
Page count: 208pp
Publisher: Knopf
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15th, 2007