Sunday, January 28, 2018

Don't Forget Me

34495943Stevens, Victoria. Don't Forget Me
February 13th 2018 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (Byr)
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus

When her mother is unable to care for her, Hazel ends up moving from London to Australia to live with the father she has never met. She meets Red, who lives nearby and has problems of his own. One of his problems is Luca, his brother, whose best friend Ryan died, a event which compelled him to give up running track, thereby distancing him from his father. Red and Lucas mother works at the restaurant Hazel's father owns, and is quite lovely. Hazel writes a memory about her mother at the end of each chapter, and although she lets on that her mother is dead (especially to Luca), we find out differently at the end of the book. Hazel makes two new friends at school, and hangs out with both brothers. She navigates her way through her new life and tries to reconcile herself with the past.
Strengths: The cover is great, and teens love to read about children who don't have to deal with their parents, for whatever reason. There is enough romance and drama to make this one appealing to high school students.
Weaknesses: Definitely YA. Not only is there language and a lot of drinking, but YA books tend to be much more conflict driven and sadder. Whiny, in the way that teens are. Everything is the end of the world. Middle grade main characters have a lot more pluck, and the books about them are more fun and adventure filled. That said, I do have a few students who like that sort of angst; I'll have them check this book out of the public library, which allows all of our students to get cards AND delivers directly to school. We have the best public library!
What I really think: I'll stick with recommending Welch's Love and Gelato and skip purchasing this one due to language and general sadness.

Ms. Yingling

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