Second novel by Simmone Howell proves that few authors write so convincingly, honestly and creatively about teenage lives A vibrant and honest novel with humour, great characters and a fantastically compelling drama Heart, humour and just a bit subversive, this is sharp fiction for fans of Juno
Simmone Howell is an award-winning short story writer whose first novel, Notes from the Teenage Underground, garnered impressive reviews. She is also a screenwriter and small press publisher and lives in Melbourne, Australia. Simmone's short film Pity24 was awarded the 2004 AWGIE for short film screenplay by the Australian Writers' Guild.
Gr 9 Up-In this thoughtful Australian novel, a troubled 16-year-old girl finds love and meaning in unexpected places. Riley Rose-rebellious, promiscuous, and deeply unhappy after the death of her mother-is dumped at an isolated Christian camp for a week so that her father and stepmother can go on vacation. Overweight, wisecracking Riley expects to hate everyone at Spirit Ranch. Instead, she bonds with some of her bunkmates and falls for Dylan, a paraplegic fellow camper. What could be a cliched situation-the bond between two outcasts-is instead touching and believable. There are some camp bullies, of course, but even the villains prove to have redeeming qualities. Riley is an appealingly flawed main character, tough-talking and funny at the same time. She hangs on to her skepticism but allows some tenderness to penetrate her armor. That she could change so profoundly in a single week sometimes stretches credibility, and the slow pace might deter less determined readers. Overall, however, this novel will appeal to sensitive teens who will root for Riley and the other camp underdogs.-Miranda Doyle, San Francisco Public Library Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
'A brill book - perfect for bad girls with hearts of gold!' Mizz 'Packed with sharp, sassy humour, with sprinklings of contemporary - and often surprisingly lyrical - descriptions and metaphors ... The humour - and the teen angst - was spot on' Mslexia