THE SNOWBALL EFFECT by Holly Nicole Hoxter


Age Range: 14 & up
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Whenever faced with a decision, 17-year-old Lainey Pike always chooses the chicken—selecting the safest option, so she knows exactly what she’s going to get. However, when her mother commits suicide, Lainey begins rethinking her comfortable approach to life choices, especially her decision to commit to her long-term boyfriend, Riley. Playing heavily into her change of heart is her reunion with her estranged older sister, Vallery, and their new role in raising their younger brother, Collin, who has major behavioral issues and becomes the focus of many complicated and difficult decisions. Pushed out of her comfort zone, Lainey begins taking chances, sampling a variety of life experiences and subconsciously applying her mom’s teachings from her former role as a life coach. Expertly weaving together quirky family stories, realistic characters and tough decisions, Hoxter presents a unique coming-of-age story, which highlights that teens need not just go with the flow but can and should control their own destinies. (Fiction. YA)

Pub Date: April 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-06-175571-2
Page count: 368pp
Publisher: HarperTeen
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1st, 2010

Kirkus Interview
John Sandford
author of SATURN RUN
October 6, 2015

Saturn Run, John Sandford’s new novel, is quite a departure for the bestselling thriller writer, who sets aside his Lucas Davenport crime franchise (Gathering Prey, 2015, etc.) and partners with photographer and sci-fi buff Ctein to leave Earth’s gravitational field for the rings of Saturn. The year is 2066. A Caltech intern inadvertently notices an anomaly from a space telescope—something is approaching Saturn, and decelerating. Space objects don’t decelerate; spaceships do. A flurry of top-level government meetings produces the inescapable conclusion: whatever built that ship is at least 100 years ahead in hard and soft technology, and whoever can get their hands on it exclusively and bring it back will have an advantage so large, no other nation can compete. A conclusion the Chinese definitely agree with when they find out. The race is on. “James Bond meets Tom Swift, with the last word reserved not for extraterrestrial encounters but for international piracy, state secrets, and a spot of satisfyingly underhanded political pressure,” our reviewer writes. View video >


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