Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Latte Rebellion by Sarah Jamila Stevenson

Asha and her best friend Carey are secretly planning a trip after they graduate. The problem is that any money they make working goes into their college funds. They come up with a scheme to sell t-shirts online promoting the 'Latte Rebellion' to raise awareness of mixed-race students. Before they know it, the rebellion takes on a life of its own. Students in their school and across the country are wearing their shirts and starting their own chapters based on the website's manifesto.

For Asha, the Latte Rebellion is a chance to do something important; for Carey is a distraction from her school work and other activities that will get her accepted by the college of her choice.

I picked this book because I was intrigue by the idea of students creating such a group. I was mostly pleased with the story, but the one thing that bothered me was that no adults took Asha seriously. She never tells her parents about the rebellion, but they do not seem to trust her on any level anyway. They also constantly push her academically. Maybe that is just how many teens feel, but it would have been nice to have one adult actively support her.

Click here for more info about this book from the Westfield Washington Public Library.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

Samantha is one of the popular girls at her school. She has all the privileges that go with it - looks, fashion, a group of friends, a cute boyfriend (that she hopes to get much closer to). On the night of the big party, Sam is in a car accident that ends her life...sort of. She relives her last day over and over again from the time she wakes up in the morning to the moment of the screeching tires.

She does not know how many times she will relive her last day. Will it go on forever or until she makes amends for something? She tries to do things differently each time.

Even though this book sounds like a ripoff of the movie Groundhog Day, it shares a similar premise and that is all. Sam knows she has been spared from death (at least temporarily, she thinks), but she does not know where it will lead. This is one of the best teen books I have read in the last few years. It is almost impossible to not wonder what will ultimately happen to Sam and how it will affect those around her.

Click here for more info about this book from the Westfield Washington Public Library.