Trigiani, Adriana. Viola in the Spotlight.
Having spent the year at a boarding school in the Midwest, Viola is back home in her New York City neighborhood for the
summer. She’s hanging out with best friends Andrew and Caitlyn, as well as Maurice, the son of the English actor who is renting her family’s basement apartment while he is starring in a stage production opposite Viola’s grandmother. Viola has an internship with the lighting director of the play, and still works on her movie making. When her friends from Prefect Academy come to spend time in New York, sh has to decide which is more important to her-- her friends at school, or her life in the city.
Strengths: As in her adult fiction, Trigiani is a master of making one feel IN a place. The people and places are all so vividly portrayed that they seem real. I liked this one much better than the first, which threw me when the ed of the stoy took a paranormal twist. Last weekend I read Brava, Valentina, which I liked very much. Don’t get to read much adult fiction.
Weaknesses: Again, not much action here, but that’s young adult. I’m just not used to reading a lot of it.
Colasanti, Susane. So Much Closer.
Brooke has been in love with Scott for two years... they’ve just never spoken. When she decides to tell him about this at the end-of-year picnic, she finds out that he is moving away from New Jersey to New York City and is too flabbergasted to say anything. Her father also lives in NYC after her parents’ acrimonious divorce, and she decides to move in with him, ostensibly in order to g to a better school but really so that she has a chance of seeing Scott. Amazingly, she does! He goes to her school and lives close by, so they start hanging out. Brooke is sad that her father doesn’t spend more time with her, but makes a good group of friends, gets involved in peer tutoring, is recognized as being brilliant but unmotivated by her teaches, and eventually becomes a less bitter person. She and Scott date for while, but she eventually wants to become more serious, which Scott doesn’t understand, so they break up. Can Brooke decide what to do with her life now that she is no longer obsessed with Scott? What other possibilities... and boys... will present themselves.
Strengths: A good, solid romance novel. I’ve been needing more for my library, since girls will go through one a day, and I’ll definitely have to read other titles by this author.
Weaknesses: Wanted to slap Brooke a little bit for being rather a doormat, but since she improved, it was okay. Obsession with a boy-- it’s a real thing that so many girls go through!