On the outside, Macy Queen is cool and calm. On the inside, she's
Sarah Dessen is one of America's most successful writers of teenage fiction. Her books have won various awards, many of them spending several weeks on The New York Times bestseller list. Sarah lives in the countryside in North Carolina with her husband, some lizards and two very spoilt dogs. This is her second novel for Puffin, following the brilliant Just Listen.
Gr 7 Up-Sarah Dessen's first person story (Viking, 2004) unfolds through the eyes of 16-year-old Macy, a high school student who was with her father when he died of a heart attack 18 months ago. She and her mother have developed a strained routine by convincing each other that they are "fine, just fine" when Macy knows deep down that they are far from okay. They've never properly grieved or allowed themselves to integrate this awful experience and grow from it. Through a summer of chaotic catering experiences, an acquaintance with a young artist who lost his mother to cancer, and a friendship with a girl who carries her scars openly and deals with them in a like manner, Macy learns what she needs to do to mend herself and hopefully help her mother. This winning novel features convincing parent-child interactions and a growing romance. Stina Nielsen does a great job with Dessen's realistic dialogue, varying pitch, pacing, and tone to differentiate between characters. She delivers the "Fine, just fine" mantra that is repeated throughout the novel with perfect pitch every time, varied according to speaker and occasion but always on target. Teenagers in middle school and above will relate to Macy's emotional growth and discovery of the importance of communication in this sometimes humorous but always poignant novel.-Jane P. Fenn, Corning-Painted Post West High School, NY Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
A compelling story and beautifully written. Give this to a teenage girl and don't expect to see her until the last page has turned -- (on Just Listen) Time Out A poignant coming-of-age story ... this is perceptive and powerful storytelling -- (on Just Listen) Big Issue Dessen gracefully balances comedy with tragedy, and introduces a complex heroine worth getting to know -- (on The Truth About Forever) Publishers Weekly Sarah! I love all of your books, you've inspired me so much MySpace user I don't know how to explain how amazing your books are MySpace user
When her boyfriend goes away for the summer, Macy, still grieving for her recently deceased father, must make it on her own. "Dessen gracefully balances comedy with tragedy and introduces a complex heroine worth getting to know," according to PW. Ages 12-up. (Apr.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.