VENOLA IN LOVE by Cheryl Ware


Age Range: 8 - 12
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In this sequel to Catty-Cornered (1998), Venola is now in the second half of seventh grade and has become quite boy-crazy. Although she’s never had a boyfriend, she has purchased a journal with the hope that something exciting will happen so that she might write about it. Well, lo and behold, a new hunky guy, Nathan, enters her school and thus becomes the primary topic of Venola’s journal entries. The most interesting aspect of this book is the format; the story unfolds through e-mails, journal entries and class notes, which the reader experiences entirely from Venola’s point of view. No responses are ever seen. There are a few diversions from Venola’s obsession with Nathan and her efforts to capture him: she discovers two of her friends are shoplifting and that her parents are going to have yet another baby (they already have 6 children!). By the end, Nathan reveals himself to be rather dull and to have a smoking habit. Venola thinks she might have a crush on someone else. The story closes with worthy food for thought: “Could it be that I just wanted to be IN LOVE, and that was more important than the WHO?” Overall, in spite of the interesting format, Venola’s story is insipid and uninspiring. (line drawings) (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2000
ISBN: 0-531-30306-3
Page count: 160pp
Publisher: Orchard
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15th, 2000


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