Note about my Reviews

Dear Authors: The reviews in this blog are only personal opinions. I have absolutely no background in literature, writing or reviewing. I am a Librarian (actually a Library Technician for those who care OR know the difference) with a love for a good story. The opinions in the reviews are ONLY my OPINIONS. I am not commenting on the writers ability since well -- I am not a writer and never will be. If you are the author of any of the books reviewed here, my opinion is just that and not a judgment against you!

Monday, May 6, 2013

Hold Fast by Blue Balliett

Hold Fast
by Blue Balliett
Scholastic Press
ISBN: 978-0-545-29988-6
Suggested Ages: 12+
Buy from Indigo

Description: From NYT bestselling author Blue Balliett, the story of a girl who falls into Chicago's shelter system, and from there must solve the mystery of her father's strange disappearance.

Where is Early's father? He's not the kind of father who would disappear. But he's gone . . . and he's left a whole lot of trouble behind.

As danger closes in, Early, her mom, and her brother have to flee their apartment. With nowhere else to go, they are forced to move into a city shelter. Once there, Early starts asking questions and looking for answers. Because her father hasn't disappeared without a trace. There are patterns and rhythms to what's happened, and Early might be the only one who can use them to track him down and make her way out of a very tough place.

The Good Stuff
  • Very unusual and truly unique
  • Fast paced and totally engrossing, I did not want to put it down
  • Early is a wonderful character that you cheer for and want to help
  • Heartbreaking, honest  and real
  • Focuses on the power of words, a love of language and the library world - of course I am going to love it
  • Highlights the plight that families that are homeless live through - the prejudice they fight, the lack of resources, help and understanding
  • Stays with you long after you finished reading
  • Stresses the importance of family and hope
  • Not in your face or preachy with the moral aspect of the story - just shows you what life can be like for those forced onto the street and into shelters - very impressive gift Ms Balliett
  • Will be looking for other works by this author as I was so impressed
  • Adding this to my Staff Picks at work
The Not so Good Stuff
  • Her writing style may put off the type of reader that would benefit the most
Favorite Quotes Passages

``Books are produced in batches, and the first printing is like the first batch of cookies from the oven. It`s the one everyone wants.``

``No one official seemed to be too concerned. It was almost, Early  thought, as if you weren`t 100 percent human when you came into the police station on the wrong side of the front desk. If you were upset, it was unreasonable. If you had a question, it could wait. Just the fact that you were there seemed like a strike against you. Right then Early made herself a promise: she wouldn`t be helpless, not ever, not if she could see a way out. She wouldn`t allow that to happen.  She could see that being helpless in a situation like this was dangerously close to becoming just less.``

``It`s so fun, like seeing a movie with popcorn, only better, because it stays in your head as long as you want it to and then you can go back and see parts of it again.``

Who Should Shouldn't Read
  • Would be perfect for a class read 
  • For anyone of any age with a love for the written word
  • The reluctant reader might have a hard time with this one which is a shame
4.75 Deweys

I received this from Scholastic in exchange for an honest review (You KNEW I would love this one didn`t you Nikole)

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