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STRUTS & FRETS by Jon Skovron


by Jon Skovron

Age Range: 14 & up

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-8109-4174-8
Publisher: Abrams

Though rehearsals haven’t been smooth for Sammy Bojar’s band, Tragedy of Wisdom, it appears to be his shot at becoming a legitimate musician. There’s more drama than music in his life though: His grandfather suffers from increasing dementia, and Sammy has just started dating his best friend, Jen. As the band competition approaches, he finally starts changing the tempo of his life. Good character development and solid pacing keep readers involved with the narrative, which sometimes attempts to cover too much. Secondary adult characters receive more attention than Sammy’s bandmates, leaving those supporting-character teens to languish somewhat. Skovron’s musical influences fit nicely with the older indie teen reader, but these details will somewhat date the text. Sammy and Jen’s romance nicely reflects a transitional relationship, and the author doesn’t hide any of the difficulties involved in changing from friendship to dating. Deftly executed, this debut novel hits a few high notes and handily avoids falling flat. (Fiction. YA)