Middle school students have reading interests that run the gamut from Diary of a Wimpy Kid to Twilight. Sometimes as a parent it is hard to know what is age appropriate for your child. Through this blog, I will try to help parents make informed decisions about what is available in our library. I am hoping that this blog will be a resource for our parents, and that we can all work together to make our students life-long readers!

Friday, September 16, 2016

Since You've Been Gone

Since You've Been Gone
by Morgan Matson
From the publisher:
"It was Sloane who yanked Emily out of her shell and made life 100% interesting. But right before what should have been the most epic summer, Sloane just…disappears. All she leaves behind is a to-do list.

On it, thirteen Sloane-inspired tasks that Emily would normally never try. But what if they could bring her best friend back?

Apple picking at night? Okay, easy enough.

Dance until dawn? Sure. Why not?

Kiss a stranger? Um...

Emily now has this unexpected summer, and the help of Frank Porter (totally unexpected), to check things off Sloane's list. Who knows what she’ll find?

Go skinny-dipping? Wait...what?

This was a really fun, sweet book. It came out in 2014 and I never purchased it for my library because I thought it would be a little too old for my middle school students (re: the list with things like skinny dipping , stealing, and kissing strangers). Then I read another review that said it was "too tame", and I thought - perfect! That's what I like and what I get for my middle schoolers who love romance. I'm really glad I saw that and decided to purchase this one. 

I loved the main character, Emily. It was inspiring to see her growth throughout the course of the book. I hope it will be eye opening to some of my middle schoolers who are in kind of toxic friendships where one person is so clearly dominant and the other person feels like they only have an identity because of their friend.

“It just gets hard, always being someone's second choice” 

I was so glad to see Emily come out of her shell, make new friends, have fun adventures and ultimately change her relationship with Sloane. Quite frankly, I was not a huge Sloane fan. I'm glad things were somewhat resolved with their friendship at the end. However, I did love Frank, Collins and Dawn. What an awesome group of friends! I was saddened by something that happened at the end with the group and wish we could have gotten some resolution on that. But I still really liked the book. Here are a couple more of my favorite quotes:

“In a well-ordered universe...camping would take place indoors.” 
(Obviously a kindred spirit!) And:

“Do you not like The Beatles?" Frank asked, sounding shocked. "Do you also not like sunshine and laughter and puppies?” 

Fun, witty, heart-warming and eye-opening are all ways I would describe this book. 

Areas of concern:
*Maybe 2 or 3 mild cuss words.
*Boy and girl sleep in a tent together sharing a pillow. Nothing happens.
*A skinny-dipping scene where towels were (of course) stolen. 
*A couple of heavy-duty kissing scenes. Nothing graphic.

Suggested Ages:
Publisher's Weekly - Ages 12+
School Library Journal - Grades 7+

No comments:

Post a Comment