William Golding updated with humor. (Adventure. 12-17)

SHARKS & BOYS

Thoughtless teen behavior leads four sets of twins on a deadly adventure in a horribly realistic but often very funny survival tale.

These eight teens have been part of a research study and know each other all too well. Enid, the only girl (she is a fraternal twin), is on a break from dating Wick, whose brother conspired to diss her in a zine co-authored by Burr and Skate, twins whose parents have just died in an accident. Narrator Enid isn’t funny on purpose, but her angst and stalker behavior are hilarious, as she abandons her responsibilities and drives five hours to eavesdrop on the guys, who are partying. The boys head to the Gretchen, a boat owned by Burr and Skate, for a slightly tipsy outing on the high seas, and Enid follows, sure that Gretchen is female and possibly a stripper. She ends up hiding on board in the head. When the boat goes down and they are left with only a plastic raft, the reality turns increasingly deadly as the often-fortunate coincidences of survival tales don’t help these kids out. As Enid names a few of the circling sharks, their increasingly dire situation reveals more about all eight twins, with twins Munny and Sov, who’ve seemed vulnerable, exhibiting unsuspected strength.

William Golding updated with humor.  (Adventure. 12-17)

Pub Date: June 28, 2011

ISBN: 978-1-4231-4354-3

Page Count: 272

Publisher: Hyperion

Review Posted Online: April 18, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2011

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An emotionally engaging closer that fumbles in its final moments.

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ALWAYS AND FOREVER, LARA JEAN

From the To All the Boys I've Loved Before series , Vol. 3

Lara Jean prepares for college and a wedding.

Korean-American Lara Jean is finally settled into a nice, complication-free relationship with her white boyfriend, Peter. But things don’t stay simple for long. When college acceptance letters roll in, Peter and Lara Jean discover they’re heading in different directions. As the two discuss the long-distance thing, Lara Jean’s widower father is making a major commitment: marrying the neighbor lady he’s been dating. The whirlwind of a wedding, college visits, prom, and the last few months of senior year provides an excellent backdrop for this final book about Lara Jean. The characters ping from event to event with emotions always at the forefront. Han further develops her cast, pushing them to new maturity and leaving few stones unturned. There’s only one problem here, and it’s what’s always held this series back from true greatness: Peter. Despite Han’s best efforts to flesh out Peter with abandonment issues and a crummy dad, he remains little more than a handsome jock. Frankly, Lara Jean and Peter may have cute teen chemistry, but Han's nuanced characterizations have often helped to subvert typical teen love-story tropes. This knowing subversion is frustratingly absent from the novel's denouement.

An emotionally engaging closer that fumbles in its final moments. (Romance. 14-17)

Pub Date: May 2, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-4814-3048-7

Page Count: 336

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: March 29, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2017

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This is no didactic near-future warning of present evils, but a cinematic adventure featuring endearing, compelling heroes

LEGEND

From the Legend series , Vol. 1

A gripping thriller in dystopic future Los Angeles.

Fifteen-year-olds June and Day live completely different lives in the glorious Republic. June is rich and brilliant, the only candidate ever to get a perfect score in the Trials, and is destined for a glowing career in the military. She looks forward to the day when she can join up and fight the Republic’s treacherous enemies east of the Dakotas. Day, on the other hand, is an anonymous street rat, a slum child who failed his own Trial. He's also the Republic's most wanted criminal, prone to stealing from the rich and giving to the poor. When tragedies strike both their families, the two brilliant teens are thrown into direct opposition. In alternating first-person narratives, Day and June experience coming-of-age adventures in the midst of spying, theft and daredevil combat. Their voices are distinct and richly drawn, from Day’s self-deprecating affection for others to June's Holmesian attention to detail. All the flavor of a post-apocalyptic setting—plagues, class warfare, maniacal soldiers—escalates to greater complexity while leaving space for further worldbuilding in the sequel.

This is no didactic near-future warning of present evils, but a cinematic adventure featuring endearing, compelling heroes . (Science fiction. 12-14)

Pub Date: Nov. 29, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-399-25675-2

Page Count: 336

Publisher: Putnam

Review Posted Online: April 8, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2011

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