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"The poems are excellent and the author beautifully captures the complex emotions of the teens...Fast paced, and often heartbreaking, this novel offers the reader much to discuss and think about long after reading."-- (07/01/2010) "The free-verse voices are all nicely handled; the teens are engaging...characters; and Natalie's machinations are compelling."--Booklist (10/15/2010) "Phillips adeptly spins complex, provocative, sharp-imaged lines of poetry in this first novel that is mostly told by the four main characters...Enough razor blades, lust, jealousy and revenge to keep readers breathlessly hooked until the very end."--Kirkus Reviews (10/15/2010) "An eloquent story with an intriguing format...This book is recommended for literature study groups, poetry lovers, and for the study of relationships between friends and among parents and children."-- (10/01/2010) "The poetry is touching, painful, and jarring as Phillips presents [the characters'] stories through their hesitations, hopes, pains, and fears. The plot constantly twists and turns, keeping the reader guessing what will happen next."-- (02/01/2011) "The novel leaves readers gripping their seats and begging for more...Reluctant readers will like the quick flow of the novel, and poetry lovers will enjoy the verse form. Students will be finishing the book the day they begin. Recommended."-- (03/01/2011) "While the stories are ordinary enough, they become far more intriguing as the reader is forced to discover them in the intricate poems written by the four teenagers...An original read...[and] undeniably worth the extra energy it takes when compared to the average teen novel."-- (04/01/2011) "The beauty of the free verse style is that readers are never overwhelmed with narrative description or ongoing dialogue...It works beautifully and gives a refreshing new perspective about the cruel games sometimes played in high schools and the resulting teenage angst, despair and emotional trauma. Fishtailing is a novel worth having in any collection - for the poignant characterization, for the gripping plot, for the ingenuity of the writing. Highly Recommended."-- (06/04/2010)

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