LEAP by Jane Breskin Zalben

LEAP

Age Range: 10 - 13
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Long-time picture-book author Zalben jumps back into novels with a sensitive coming-of-age story, told in alternating voices, of Krista and Daniel’s first year in middle school. Daniel, a former champion swimmer, must learn to walk again after an allergic reaction to general anesthesia left him partially paralyzed; Krista must sort through her feelings for Daniel, her former inseparable elementary-school best friend, and Bobby, her first crush. Their observation and care for a science-class tadpole parallels their own successful changes and “leaps” into life, as Daniel confronts his disability with determination and accepts his mother’s separation from the family. Krista realizes that there’s more to see beneath everyone’s façade, and the two make choices that will shape their character forever. While a few thoughts are beyond Krista and Daniel’s age and experience (e.g., “Yeah, you make Chevy Chase and his falling act on the old SNL look like nothing”), Zalben understands a ’tween’s range of emotions and that their friendships and first kisses are as important as solving the world’s problems. (Fiction. 10-13)

Pub Date: Jan. 9th, 2007
ISBN: 0-375-83871-6
Page count: 272pp
Publisher: Knopf
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1st, 2007




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