Posts Tagged 'modeling'

Three Willows by Ann Brashares

cover-3-willows

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Age Level: 12 and up

# of Pages: 318 p.

RAC Book: Yes

Ama, Jo, and Polly are three friends who met in 3rd grade and have drifted a bit over the last few years. In the summer before their freshman year of high school they each take a different journey. Ama reluctantly takes an opportunity to go on a wilderness adventure in which she can earn school credit.   In order to get credit, however, she has to survive to the end and rappel off of a mountain. Jo goes to her family’s summer home with her mother and gets a job at a restaurant. Polly decides to go to a modeling clinic. Ama has a difficult time adjusting to her wilderness adventure because she is weak, slow, and seems to get hurt a lot. She thinks about giving up and going home several times, but she doesn’t feel comfortable talking to anyone about her real feelings. Jo realizes that her parents’ marriage is in trouble and makes some bad choices over the summer in order to avoid dealing with it. Polly feels very lonely with no friends and a mother who spends all of her time in her workshop. She responds by putting herself on a strict diet. As the three struggle with their personal problems they all realize how important it is to keep your true friends close.

Those who were fans of the original sisterhood books will like this story. The writing style is the same and it is easy to care about these three girls and the struggles they have to deal with over this very important summer. The girls from the traveling pants series are mentioned briefly, but it is not a sequel to those books. Instead, it is a book about friendship with three new girls. These girls are a bit younger than the traveling pants girls, but they will find an audience who cares about them and wants to hear what happens to them after they start high school. The transition to high school is a time of many changes for young girls and that is illustrated beautifully in this story as each girl struggles with different challenges and finds inner strength she never knew she had. Brashares knows how to write very relatable and interesting teenage girls.

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Just Listen by Sarah Dessen

Genre:  Realistic Fiction

Age Level:  14 and up

# of pages:  371

RAC Book:  Yes

Annabel Greene is beginning her senior year with a sense of dread.  She is afraid that no one will talk to her and she will have no friends, which is exactly what ends up happening.  She eats her lunch alone and the school outcast is the only one who will even come near her.  Her former best friend has now turned everyone in the school against her based on something that happened early in the summer that is not revealed for a long time.

Annabel has two older sisters, one who is currently taking classes in New York, and one who is at home recuperating from an eating disorder.  At one time all of these girls worked as models, but now Annabel is the only one who still does it.  As she realizes she would like to end her modeling career, she also realizes that this will be yet another thing she keeps inside and doesn’t tell anyone.  Annabel does not like to upset people or disappoint anyone, so therefore never tells anyone what she truly thinks or feels.

Owen is the outcast who sits with her at lunch and eventually they begin talking.  He has a radio show in which he plays very untraditional music.  He demands honesty at all times and Annabel begins to think he might be someone she could really confide in.  The question is whether or not she will let herself actually tell anyone about what happened on that fateful summer day that forever changed her life.  This story is well written and will be a favorite with many teenagers.  This book encourages teenagers to take control of their lives in order to plan what they want to do in the future instead of what their parents’ plan for them.  In today’s society it can be difficult to break away from a parent’s protective guidance.  Recommended.

 


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