Kirkus Reviews QR Code
PREGNANT PAUSE by Han Nolan Kirkus Star


by Han Nolan

Age Range: 14 & up

Pub Date: Sept. 19th, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-15-206570-6
Publisher: Harcourt

Sixteen-year-old Elly is pregnant. Add a well-meaning but hopeless boyfriend, angry parents and a summer holed away in the backwoods of Maine playing camp counselor to a bunch of overweight kids, and having a baby becomes only one of her problems.

Determined to decide her own future, Elly refuses to return to Kenya with her missionary parents. Unfortunately her only other options are living with her self-righteous sister in California or getting married to Lam, the baby’s father. Soon Elly is not only seven months pregnant, but a newlywed. If she can survive working for her MIL (mother-in-law), keep her husband sober and figure out how to make a difference with the young campers she leads, she might make it to her due date. Her biggest problem is that she has no idea what to do once the baby arrives. As revealed in her first-person narration, Elly is passionate, smart-mouthed, rebellious and completely endearing. Secondary characters are similarly well-crafted, refusing to fit into stereotypes. Readers may feel like laughing, crying and grinding their teeth in frustration, but they will always feel like they are in the experienced hands of a master storyteller.

Nolan proves once again that she can take a familiar story to surprising new heights. (Fiction. 14 & up)