HOW I SPENT MY LAST NIGHT ON EARTH

It’s not enough that brilliant and beautiful Allegra “Legs” Hanover is infatuated with handsome, elusive, and seemingly unattainable oddball classmate and surfer Andros Bliss, but her long-time admirer and would-be boyfriend, nerdy Derman Bloom, has just slept with Legs’s best friend, Angie. Or has he? No one is really sure, and Time Zone High’s legendary Rules of Virginity aren’t much help. Slightly worse than her unrequited love and this recent betrayal is pending global calamity: A huge asteroid is hurtling toward Earth, expected to hit and destroy the world within hours. Legs wants to make the best of whatever time she has left, but Andros, enigmatic as ever and a surfer to the bone, is more interested in the last big wave the collision will cause. Strasser (who last visited this setting in Girl Gives Birth to Own Prom Date, 1996, etc.) has taken a serious notion—how to function in the face of disaster—and fashioned a riotously funny tale. In the face of recent end-of-the-world films, this novel looks almost masterful, with some weird and wonderful characters, side-splitting dialogue, suspense, and way more attitude than any old asteroid can diminish. (Fiction. 12-14)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1998

ISBN: 0-689-81113-6

Page Count: 169

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1998

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THOU SHALT NOT DUMP THE SKATER DUDE

AND OTHER COMMANDMENTS I HAVE BROKEN

This seemingly light coming-of-age story begins with young and immature Kelsey, daughter of wealthy divorced parents, reluctantly moving to San Francisco where she struggles to fit in at her exclusive school. When she enters a more open high school, she almost inadvertently becomes the girlfriend of C.J., a moderately famous skateboarding champion. The romance, however, consists almost entirely of watching C.J. skate and passionate make-out sessions. Kelsey decides to break off the relationship, whereupon C.J. trashes her on the Internet. Kelsey now has to deal not only with being unpopular, but must cope with the fact that virtually everyone believes C.J.’s lies about her. As she learns to stand up for herself, the story becomes deeper and even suspenseful. Graham delivers a sensitive, in-depth exploration of an initially shallow girl who grows into independence, belying the ultra-light title. A very nice job indeed. (Fiction. 12-14)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2005

ISBN: 0-670-06017-8

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2005

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EVOLUTION, ME & OTHER FREAKS OF NATURE

Mena Reece’s freshman year is not turning out as planned; she’s been shunned by her friends because she blew the whistle on them. They all belong to an ultra-conservative church (Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings are banned from her reading list). Suspecting a fellow classmate to be gay, the group harassed him and after his attempted suicide, Mena sent an apologetic letter naming names. The boy’s family sues the church and everyone blames Mena for the disruption, especially her parents. Then Mena is paired with Casey Connor, a science geek, and her life takes a positive turn. When the science class begins the unit on evolution, Mena’s church insists Intelligent Design be included. As the church ramps up its demands, shy Mena finds her voice as Bible Grrrl, “defender of truth in biblical citations.” Suddenly, Bible Grrrl’s opinions are hot. Casey’s friendship allows Mena to question her conservative upbringing, and the fact that he really likes her helps her outlook immensely. An appealingly humorous take on themes classic and new. (Fiction. 12-14)

Pub Date: Aug. 28, 2007

ISBN: 978-0-375-84349-5

Page Count: 272

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2007

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