For ANOTHER chance to win this book (Since Ms. Faris was kind enough to provide a copy for a giveaway here!), leave a comment with the title of YOUR favorite middle grade romance book when you were in middle school. I'm going to have to go with Beverly Cleary's Fifteen.
Check back tomorrow for a giveaway of Patrick Jenning's Hissy Fitz!Faris, Stephanie. 25 Roses.
January 6th 2015 by Aladdin (In hardcover!!!)
E ARC from Netgalley.com
When she is working on selling roses for the seventh grade class so that the the whole grade can win a lock in, Mia feels bad that the same popular, pretty girls get roses all the time. When she and her best friend Ashleigh sell the chocolate roses, Mia buys 25 with her own money and sends them anonymously to people she thinks deserves them, along with a complementary message. This sets off a wave of drama in the school: popular girl Kaylee is angry that other people get roses, the disheveled Sun and the athletic Trudie want makeovers because they think they have secret admirers, and Ashleigh and Mia have some friendship difficulties over all of the attention that Mia is giving to everyone else... except for Alex, the boy who likes her. On the night of the lock in, Mia thinks that things will go smoothly, but her secret is exposed and the seventh graders all react differently to learning that they don't really have secret admirers.
Strengths: I remember trying to keep a list of all of the romances that went on around me in the 7th grade, and in reality, things ARE this convoluted! One of the things that my girls ask for is books with "drama" in them, and this certainly has it. I liked that Mia has good intentions in handing out extra roses, and she deals with mean girl Kaylee without resorting to meanness herself. Mia's romance with Alex is also well done, because the two are friends first.
Weaknesses: I found it hard to believe that Mia would get punished for sending out 25 anonymous roses. Yes, it helped her group win the lock in, but there seemed to be no rule against it. As an adult, I feel uncomfortable with the girls wanting makeovers, but the 12-year-old me was an enormous fan of Ellen Conford's Seven Days to a Brand New Me, so I can't really complain!
It's Marvelous Middle Grade Monday at Ramblings of a Wannabe Scribe and What Are You Reading? day at Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers.