05 February 2009

Converting Kate by Beckie Weinheimer

Kate and her mom have just moved from Phoenix, Arizona to small-town, Maine to help run Aunt Katherine’s Bed & Breakfast. Taking advantage of the move, Kate finally quits the Holy Divine Church in order to explore her own beliefs and to find out what exists beyond the church. Her devout mother doesn’t agree with Kate’s decision and continually reminds her of the beliefs with which she was raised. But Kate now has the distractions of public high school, where she makes friends, joins the school’s track team, and even starts going to Youth Group meetings at her aunt’s traditional Christian church. She forms relationships with a variety of people in the town, including vegetarian “tree-hugging” Jamie, cute lobsterman Will, and the new young priest at church. As her relationships with her family and new friends shift and develop over the course of the story, Kate also is faced with issues of tolerance, cruelty, and shame, and she discovers that not all situations are black-and-white, right-or-wrong.

Kate is a strong young woman, who doesn’t even realize how mature she is. There are a number of interlacing issues in this story – homosexuality, religious and educational tolerance and censorship, coming of age, and love and attraction to name a few – but everything works well together in a way that makes sense to the reader. Most of the characters are likeable and high school readers will have much to which relate.

Recommended for high school readers.
Call number: YA WEINHEIMER (Teen Room)

Reviewed by kate the librarian

1 comment:

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