THE MAP FROM HERE TO THERE

An immersive senior year experience, beginnings and endings included.

After an amazing summer with her screenwriting partner, Maeve, in New York City, Paige Hancock’s life back home in Oakhurst, Indiana, is looking up—reminders of the drowning death two years earlier of her boyfriend, Aaron, and her reoccurring anxiety issues notwithstanding. But the start of her senior year heralds changes for relationships that give her life stability: with her tightknit friendship group; new boyfriend, Max; outgoing younger sister, Cameron; and divorced parents, whose relationship seems on the mend. She also works through wavering feelings about her college options—the safe in-state public university or private schools in New York and California? Enter Paige and friends’ bucket list for a final year of bonding! The theme of separation runs throughout the book, from her friends’ changing to Paige’s own evolving views on life. Screenplay references that frame the narration of Paige’s life and descriptions of how she deals with her anxiety make the story shine. The well-developed ensemble cast includes diverse family structures and shifting friendship dynamics that mirror Paige’s own evolution in this satisfying story that ties up all the loose ends. Paige and most main characters are white; one of Paige’s close friends is biracial (black and Polish), one is lesbian, and there is diversity in secondary characters.

Engrossing and engaging. (Fiction. 14-18)

Pub Date: Jan. 7, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-68119-938-2

Page Count: 400

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Review Posted Online: Sept. 23, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2019

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An enticing, turbulent, and satisfying final voyage.

THE NOBLEMAN'S GUIDE TO SCANDAL AND SHIPWRECKS

From the Montague Siblings series , Vol. 3

Adrian, the youngest of the Montague siblings, sails into tumultuous waters in search of answers about himself, the sudden death of his mother, and her mysterious, cracked spyglass.

On the summer solstice less than a year ago, Caroline Montague fell off a cliff in Aberdeen into the sea. When the Scottish hostel where she was staying sends a box of her left-behind belongings to London, Adrian—an anxious, White nobleman on the cusp of joining Parliament—discovers one of his mother’s most treasured possessions, an antique spyglass. She acquired it when she was the sole survivor of a shipwreck many years earlier. His mother always carried that spyglass with her, but on the day of her death, she had left it behind in her room. Although he never knew its full significance, Adrian is haunted by new questions and is certain the spyglass will lead him to the truth. Once again, Lee crafts an absorbing adventure with dangerous stakes, dynamic character growth, sharp social and political commentary, and a storm of emotion. Inseparable from his external search for answers about his mother, Adrian seeks a solution for himself, an end to his struggle with mental illness—a journey handled with hopeful, gentle honesty that validates the experiences of both good and bad days. Characters from the first two books play significant secondary roles, and the resolution ties up their loose ends. Humorous antics provide a well-measured balance with the heavier themes.

An enticing, turbulent, and satisfying final voyage. (Historical fiction. 14-18)

Pub Date: Nov. 16, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-06-291601-3

Page Count: 464

Publisher: Katherine Tegen/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Sept. 1, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2021

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Many teen novels touch on similar themes, but few do it so memorably.

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ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES

Two struggling teens develop an unlikely relationship in a moving exploration of grief, suicide and young love.

Violet, a writer and member of the popular crowd, has withdrawn from her friends and from school activities since her sister died in a car accident nine months earlier. Finch, known to his classmates as "Theodore Freak," is famously impulsive and eccentric. Following their meeting in the school bell tower, Finch makes it his mission to re-engage Violet with the world, partially through a school project that sends them to offbeat Indiana landmarks and partially through simple persistence. (Violet and Finch live, fortunately for all involved, in the sort of romantic universe where his throwing rocks at her window in the middle of the night comes off more charming than stalker-esque.) The teens alternate narration chapter by chapter, each in a unique and well-realized voice. Finch's self-destructive streak and suicidal impulses are never far from the surface, and the chapters he narrates are interspersed with facts about suicide methods and quotations from Virginia Woolf and poet Cesare Pavese. When the story inevitably turns tragic, a cast of carefully drawn side characters brings to life both the pain of loss and the possibility of moving forward, though some notes of hope are more believable than others.

Many teen novels touch on similar themes, but few do it so memorably. (Fiction. 14 & up)

Pub Date: Jan. 6, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-385-75588-7

Page Count: 400

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: Oct. 1, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2014

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