Sunday, September 21, 2014

Jessica Darling #2

18619857McCafferty, Megan. Jessica Darling's It List 2: The (Totally Not) Guaranteed Guide to Friends, Foes, and  Faux Friends
September 23rd 2014 by Poppy
E ARC from

After her tragic turn as the school mascot, Jessica gets another list from her older sister Bethany-- this one a little more cryptic than the last and dealing with the issue of friends and enemies. This is something that Jessica really struggles with. Since she isn't on the CHEER TEAM and her former BFF Bridget is. She also feels left out of Manda and Dara's dynamic duo, and is not as comfortable with boys as her friends are. When Jessica is seen talking to Scotty, Dori's boyfriend, rumors circulate that they would be an item, and Jessica worries about the effect this rumor will have on her social life, especially since she is taking notice of Aleck, who is in the wood shop class SHE IS NOT SUPPOSED TO BE TAKING. Cross Country seems to be the one place where Jessica is happy and comfortable, especially after a group Halloween costume falls apart and a slumber party fails disastrously. Never fear-- Jessica survives and will be back with another book next fall.
Strengths: Like The Dork Diaries and The Clique, this book showcases the worst of middle school girl behavior. Reading  about this is somehow very comforting to girls going through similar experiences, even though I can only think of ONE student in 20 years that was anywhere close to being as annoying as Manda and Sara. It's nice that Jessica is a "late bloomer" and not as boy crazy as some of her friends. Her grandmother makes a nice appearance.
Weaknesses: A bit over the top and a bit heavy on message, even though the bulk of the story reads like the "Was My Face RED!" columns in teen magazines.

22294254DK Publishing. The Fashion Book
September 15th 2014 by DK Publishing
ARC from Baker and Taylor.

I love READING about fashion even though I can't dress myself properly, so this was especially fun. Historical information on different fashions through the ages combined with ways to work those fashions into modern dress. If I ever want to dress like a 1940s "retro tomboy" or rock a "retro Bohemian" look from 1909, I'll know where to turn.

Unfortunately, my students tend to be the opposite of me-- they dress fashionably but don't want to read about it. There is a lot of information in the book, though, and it would be a must have for a larger or public library. I do wonder if the final copy will be in color instead of all black and white.


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