Patrick’s high-concept debut falls flat. Each morning at 4:33, London Lane’s mind resets, blanking out the past—but she...

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FORGOTTEN

Imagine forgetting yesterday but remembering tomorrow.

Patrick’s high-concept debut falls flat. Each morning at 4:33, London Lane’s mind resets, blanking out the past—but she “remembers” her future. Doctors have been unable to solve her condition, so London stumbles through life faking normal, aided by notes and her mother and best friend (both of whom she “knows,” thanks to future memories). Every morning she must study her own life. Enter hot boy, but despite the growing relationship, London can’t remember him from her future. Luke’s inexplicable presence and a resurfaced actual memory set London on the trail of her own past, in which she discovers a tragic mystery. She conveniently remembers just enough to solve it, and it turns out there are happy endings all around, although only a weak “explanation” for London’s ability to effectively see the future. The flat main character and awkward necessities of writing to accommodate future memories hinder the promising premise. Present-tense narration in an adult voice (perhaps because London remembers forward?) and a personality is based only on who she will be make empathy difficult. This is compounded by the discomfiting circular logic throughout (she is friends with Jamie because she will be friends with Jamie; readers will still wonder why).

Pub Date: June 7, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-316-09461-0

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: May 4, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2011

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Magic, tennis action, and family secrets are woven into an original coming-of-age tale.

LEGACY AND THE QUEEN

A 12-year-old girl living in a kingdom ruled by a mysterious queen dreams of attaining her sport’s highest prize.

Legacy Petrin lives and works in the financially strapped orphanage in the provinces run by her father and rises early every day to practice tennis with her old racket. After her best friend, Van, excitedly tells her about a scholarship competition for a spot at an esteemed academy and the opportunity to try out for the national championships, Legacy runs away to the city to compete. After winning, she learns there is still much she doesn’t know: The players are not just proficient in tennis, but also have magical skills that they use to their advantage. Legacy befriends Pippa, a knowledgeable girl from an elite tennis family, and acquires a builder, or coach, Javi. With Pippa and Javi at her side, Legacy makes her way through the competition, despite sabotage attempts, learning secrets about her own family along the way. Legacy is a strong character, and the secondary characters also have interesting backstories. The storyline is reminiscent of other dystopian stories, but centering tennis—with lively descriptions of matches that give a strong sense of the sport—is an unusual touch. Most characters are white, although Javi is brown-skinned, and some other characters of color are mentioned.

Magic, tennis action, and family secrets are woven into an original coming-of-age tale. (Fantasy. 9-12)

Pub Date: Sept. 3, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-949520-03-3

Page Count: 208

Publisher: Granity Studios

Review Posted Online: June 23, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2019

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A keenly crafted thriller.

TIME BOMB

When a suburban high school is devastated by a bombing, a diverse group of teens gathers to find a way out.

Minor connections pre-exist among the group: biracial (black/white) Tad is on the football team with the popular Frankie, a white boy, and the pair may be a little more than just friends. Latino Z has been pegged as the class ne’er-do-well; Palestinian-American Rashid, an observant Muslim, feels extra conspicuous now that his beard has started growing. Of course, everyone knows the white daughter of a U.S. senator, the perfectly popular Diana. The wildcard is olive-skinned Cassandra, the new kid in school. When word reaches the gang that the bomber may still be inside the building, tensions rise and the small bonds just being forged threaten to disintegrate. The third-person perspective shifts chapter to chapter, letting readers into each of the character’s heads. Some of the characters are fuller than others (Z is frustratingly thin), but through their eyes the author lays out the geography of the school before the bombing and smartly paces the aftermath. Charbonneau makes the bold move of letting readers—though not all the characters—know who the bomber is right away. This pivots the suspense from a whodunit to a survival tale, and the author effectively charts the action, taking time to allow the kids to discuss current events and the perils of false assumptions.

A keenly crafted thriller. (Thriller. 12-16)

Pub Date: March 13, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-544-41670-3

Page Count: 352

Publisher: HMH Books

Review Posted Online: Nov. 22, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2017

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