Restart by Gordon Korman

Image Courtesy of Amazon.com

“‘It’s the craziest feeling. I remember how to remember, but when I actually try to do it, I’m a blank. I’m like a computer with its hard drive wiped clean. You can reboot it and the operating system works fine. But when you look for a document or file to open, nothing’s there.

Not even my own name.”

Korman, Gordon. Restart.  Scholastic, 2017. 243 pages. Hardcover. $16.99, ISBN 978-1-338-05377-7

What if you couldn’t remember your whole life – all thirteen years of it? What if people acted really strange when they were near you, like almost afraid of you? What if you found out that you were responsible for doing some really awful things? What if you weren’t that person any more and had a second chance to be better? That’s what happened to Chase. The new Chase wouldn’t dream of doing the things the old Chase did. The new Chase has made friends with some of the very people he bullied in the past. But – has he really changed? Can he make the right decisions? Will he make the most of his second chance? You’ll have to read to find out. I loved everything about this story. It will make you laugh and it will make you mad. I was rooting for Chase, will you be?

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Stick by Michael Harmon

Courtesy of Amazon.com

“Everything. This whole school. The team. Sometimes it seems like it’s all just fake. Like a pretend world. Like we’re something better than all the dregs. Isn’t that what Coach tells us? That we’re better than everybody else?”

Harmon, Michael. Stick. Alfred A. Knopf., 2015. 229 pages. Hardcover. $17.99, ISBN 978-0-385-75436-1

It all started when Brett’s (aka Stick’s) teammates dropped raw eggs on a fellow classmate. It was just a guy Stick didn’t even know but it started him thinking about a lot of things – like the football team thinking they were better than everyone else –  like his coach who was always yelling at them – like his Dad who drinks too much and only focuses on Stick’s mistakes on the field, not any of the good things he does. The team is headed for the state championship. Scouts are looking at Stick and he’s sure to get a college scholarship to play football and then eventually play in the NF. What does all this thinking do for Stick? He quits – quits the team and football – the game he has loved for so many years. Imagine his teammates reaction? Imagine his coach’s reaction? Imagine his Dad’s reaction? Now imagine an unlikely friendship with the kid who got the eggs dropped on him who also happens to be a superhero at night. You’ve got to read this book to see how it turns out? This is a story about being true to yourself. I loved it!

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HRS Black-Eyed Susan

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Stick is a High School nominee for the 2016-2017 Black Eyed Susan Award. For more information go to the Maryland Association of School Librarians.

Courtesy of Penguin Books

One Death. Nine Stories. edited by Marc Aronson & Charles R. Smith Jr.

HRS One Death Nine StoriesThis interesting book includes nine different stories by nine different authors that all are somehow related to the suicide of one person, Kevin Nicholas. I included the School Library Journal review because I think they did a really great job of summarizing the book for you. Enjoy!

Aronson, Marc & Charles R. Smith Jr. One Death. Nine Stories. Candlewick Press, 2014. 148 pages. Hardcover. $16.99, ISBN 978-0-7636-5285-2

From School Library Journal

“Gr 9 Up—Kevin Nicholas, a popular high school football player, has committed suicide, though readers don’t know that at first. In fact, through nine stories, each told by a different author and from a different point of view, readers come to know only a little about Kevin himself. Instead, readers observe the reactions of Kevin’s sister, his best friends, people who barely knew him, even of the funeral home workers who handles his body. The death of a teenager, especially by his own hand, can be impossible to understand, but lives don’t stop just because one life did. Each chapter deals with the process of initiation, acceptance, growing up, and moving on even in the face of death. The authors included are all well-known young adult writers, such as Ellen Hopkins, Rita Williams-Garcia, and A. S. King, and it is clear that they know and understand their audience. Despite the differing perspectives and characters, the writing is remarkably consistent in tone. The vignette feel of each section may appeal to reluctant readers who can manage a narrative in small chunks without losing the arc of the story itself. More enthusiastic readers will devour it whole. Keep it in mind as bibliotherapy, should the unfortunate need arise, or as a springboard for journaling or creative writing.—Katherine Koenig, The Ellis School, PA”

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Full Impact by Suzanne Weyn

“Players don’t like to tell the truth. They don’t like to be sidelined. Arnie’s not playing like he used to. His timing’s off. And he’s gotten hit a lot this season. I want you to keep an eye on him. Let me know if he shows any of the signs we talked about. I’ll take it from there

Weyn, Suzanne. Full Impact. Darby Creek., 2013. 102 pages. Paperback. $7.95, ISBN 978-1-4677-0705-3

Arnie and Norval are friends on and off the football field. They both want to play college ball. The only way Arnie will get to college is with a football scholarship. That’s why he plays so hard. That’s why he doesn’t stop playing after hit after hit to his head. He thinks if he can just hang in there until the season is over, he can rest and heal then. The hits are taking their toll on Arnie and it’s beginning to show. Coach Green wants Norval to tell him about any changes he sees in Norval? What will Norval do? Will he spy on his friend and report back? If he does, will it be too late? You won’t want to put this book down until you find out how it ends.

Link to Amazon.com.

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Available in:

Paperback

Library Binding

Kindle

HRS Suzanne Weyn pic

Want to learn more about Suzanne Weyn? Click here to check out her website.

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Recruited by Suzanne Weyn

“Cool, Kadeem thought. I get to show what I can do right at the start. It’s my chance to make a great impression”

Weyn, Suzanne. Recruited. Darby Creek., 2011. 98 pages. Paperback. $7.95, ISBN 978-0-7613-6167-7

Kadeem, star quarterback at Southside High, wants to play football in college and then eventually in the pros. His grades are improving but not as good as they could be and he needs a scholarship. Things get exciting when college recruiters start showing up to watch his games. One in particular from Teller University is inviting him to parties, giving him money, and introducing him to an oh so hot cheerleader. Is all of this legal? Will Kadeem keep enjoying all the perks and accept the offer to Teller or will he do the right thing and help the NCAA officials with their investigation?

Link to Amazon.com.

Link to Worldcat.org.

Available in:

Paperback

HRS Suzanne Weyn pic

Want to learn more about Suzanne Weyn? Click here to check out her website.

Like to follow Suzanne Weyn on Twitter? Click here.

Or you can also go to the Suzanne Weyn Official Facebook page here.

© Chris Peeler 2013