Hapka, Catherine. Heart of a Dolphin
April 26th 2016 by Scholastic PAPERBACKS Inc.
E ARC from Edelweiss Above the Treeline
When Annie and her friends are out along the coast on their Long Island home town, they see a dolphin struggling, caught in fishing line. It's difficult, but Annie manages to cut the dolphin free, and the two share a moment. Even better, the dolphin returns to frolic with Annie from time to time. This is a good thing, because Annie's best friend, Emma, has started to hang out with a more well-to-do crowd, and is ignoring Annie. Annie has to deal with her brothers, Will and Jacob, and work at her father's restaurant, the Dockview, so she doesn't have a lot of time to worry about her friend, but the betrayal still hurts. When Morgan finds out that Will named the dolphin Admiral Squeak after her father, Admiral Zeke, she plans to get revenge on Annie by luring her out on jet skis and chasing the dolphin off. Things don't go well with this plan, and Annie is caught out in a bad storm. Will her friendship with Squeak save her?
Strengths: I have a lot of students who are interested in dolphins and marine biology, and stories about middle grade friendships falling apart always go over well. This is also a good, beachy summer story, like Welcome to Dog Beach or The Cupcake Cousins.
Weaknesses: A bit predictable, both with the dolphin and with the friends.
What I really think: I can see this selling well at book fairs, but since it is only in paperback, I won't be buying it for my library.
Moceanu, Dominque and Thompson, Alicia. Unexpected Twist
June 19th 2012 by Disney-Hyperion
I really enjoyed this one, but then I found out it was only available in paperback! I'm always looking for books about gymnastics, and don't know how I missed this series. I'll try to get prebinds of the other three, but this one, of course, isn't available. I did like it, especially how it deals with Christina's injury and how she wants to keep practicing even though she would injure herself further.
"Christina has waited her whole life to make it big. And now she's ready-to be the star of the Texas Twisters, on her way to becoming the first Junior Elite all-around champion at the American Invitational. The pressure is on, and there's no turning back. But practice takes a turn for the worse when Christina lands her vault routine with a sharp pain in her ankle; it's clear that she's been pushing herself a little too hard. A forced break from gymnastics is not what Christina had in mind with the biggest competition of her life coming up. Her whole world revolves around the gym, but now she's not sure what to focus on. Hanging out with the other Twisters-best friend Noelle, spunky Britt and caring Jessie-isn't the same when she's not totally part of the team. The only person who seems to understand is Mihai, Noelle's older brother. But boys are the last thing Christina should be thinking about if she wants to get back into peak condition, right? Olympic gold medalist Dominique Moceanu and Alicia Thompson present The Go-for-Gold Gymnasts, a fliptastic series full of heart, humor, and spirit! Follow the four girls as they navigate the world of competitive gymnastics, try to balance their passion with normal lives, and learn to believe in the power of friendship."