by Cecil Castellucci
Suggested Ages: 12 + (But I think it could be read by mature 10+)
Description: Rose has given up. She's given up on friendship, on happiness, on life being anything other than black, black, black. Yrena wants out. She's a dancer ...more Rose has given up. She's given up on friendship, on happiness, on life being anything other than black, black, black. Yrena wants out. She's a dancer who doesn't want to dance, a prisoner in her own home, a resident of New York who never gets to see the city. To Rose, Yrena has always been the Russian girl who lives next door, seen through the window but never spoken to. At least not until Yrena crashes into Rose's room-and Rose's life-and sets in motion a night in New York City that none of them will ever forget. From YA superstar Cecil Castellucci, this is the story of cold hearts and cold wars warmed by simple human connection and the liberty of being young and free in the early hours of a new day
The Good Stuff
- Compelling, realistic and touching
- Made me feel and remember what it was like to be that young and idealistic -- and that is a wonderful thing
- Once I started reading it I didn't want to put it down, thank goodness it wasn't a super long read
- Extremely well written, you really feel you know these people and understand them
- Very realistic portrayal of YA's and their heightened emotions and being on the cusp of adulthood
- Parents a little more realistically portrayed -- yup author doesn't make them complete morons
- Full of Hope and understanding and the silliness of prejudice and war
- Loved the camaraderie between the kids even-though they barely knew each other
- Felt a real kinship with Rose
- Some lovely light humour
- It was really difficult to tell at first what era this is set in, which frustrated me. The author did eventually get to it but at first I thought it was during the 50/60's, until the author starts mentioning music and than I clued it.
"I thought for you Russians, dancing was in your DNA" I thought for you Americans, every girl was a cheerleader in love with a football player." Sometimes it takes someone saying something stupid to make you realize that what you said was stupid."
" I thought about that for a minute. It was comforting to know that you could always find something in common with someone else."
"I will tell you a secret. I am hoping that because my breasts have grown so much-they are really quite big--that they will not take me back at the ballet school."
What I Learned
- Really sucks to be a Russian Teenager during the 80's
- I still am not a fan of ballet, but I understand the passion of it a little more now
- That I really really want to see New York
- I think anyone would enjoy this. The suggested reading age by the publisher is 12+ but I don't see much objectionable for a younger reader. Very little mention of sex and when it is hinted at, it is very minor. I think 10+ would be just fine -- ONLY MY OPINION!
- A must addition to school and public libraries
I received this from Scholastic in return for an honest review -- and thanks Scholastic, reading this was much better than getting cash : )