July 31, 2012

Tween Tuesday: After Ever After by Jordan Sonnenblick

4 frosted, fudgy brownies.

Cover Love:
I like it but I think the model looks a little old to be Jeffery.

Why I Wanted to Read This:
I read the first book Drums, Girls and Dangerous Pie which is about Jeffery's brother Steven.  I wanted to see what happened with Jeffery so I had to read this one!  Here's the synopsis from GoodReads:

Jeffrey isn't a little boy with cancer anymore. He's a teen who's in remission, but life still feels fragile. The aftereffects of treatment have left Jeffrey with an inability to be a great student or to walk without limping. His parents still worry about him. His older brother, Steven, lost it and took off to Africa to be in a drumming circle and "find himself." Jeffrey has a little soul searching to do, too, which begins with his escalating anger at Steven, an old friend who is keeping something secret, and a girl who is way out of his league but who thinks he's cute.

Romance?:  A sweet little middle school one.

My Thoughts:
I almost stopped reading this halfway through because I wasn't finding Jeffery or his best friend Tad very likeable.  So, I was going to just skim the last half to be able to finish and review and book talk it this fall.  But, a few things caught my eye so I kept reading.  I ended up whipping through the second half and crying through the last few pages. 

When I sat down to write this review I decided that a good "coming-of-age" book has a point where the main character starts growing and becoming the person they are supposed to become.  I realize this is not an earth shattering realization, I mean, duh.  But some of the best coming of age books are those that have a pretty unlikeable character that makes small subtle changes until they are a very likeable person.

Anyway, there was some social commentary in this book about rampant and unnecessary school testing that I found over-the-top.  I have never heard of a state threatening to hold kids back a grade if they didn't pass the state test.  However, I do agree that way to much emphasis is placed on standardized testing.

To Sum Up:  I really enjoyed this.  Mr. Sonnenblick does a great job writing stories with male main characters.  I will be reading more of his!

Book from my school library collection.

Tween Tuesday was created and hosted by Sarah at GreenBeanTeenQueen.  Thanks Sarah!

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