I cannot get enough of Amber Appleton.
There has been quite a bit of discussion on this book, and some people seem to think that Amber Appleton's voice is irritating. Well, I listened to this entire book on CD, so I can officially tell you that this is not true. Amber Appleton is a lot of things, but irritating is not one of them; it just isn't fair to her. She's hopeful. She's generous. She seriously loves her mom, her friends, and her dog, Bobby Big Boy. She also loves Franks, the rest of the Five, Door Woman Lucy, Ricky Roberts, Donna, Private Jackson, the KDFC, Father Chee, and Old Man Linder, and even Joan of Old. And then some. And they all love her back. She's like a frickin ray of sunshine.
She also lives on a school bus after moving out of her mom's latest boyfriend's apartment. She's lucky Donna let's her shower at her house and sometimes feeds her (and BBB) dinner. Usually Mom isn't lucky enough to eat at all. And when something absolutely horrific happens, Amber Appleton is done with everyone. She's done with hanging out with her friends, done with living life, and done with being Amber Appleton.
This story is really about what it's like to be a good person. Maybe Amber Appleton is "too good" to be believable, but I don't think so. I think she's perfect just the way she is. She makes no excuses, and she does things (good and bad) simply for the sake of doing something (usually good). And when she loses herself, those she's loved along the way are there to drag her back up into the real world. Through her own kindness she gains strength. Through haikus she gains peace. And through this story, you'll gain a heck of a great read. Better yet, a great listen. (But don't take my word for it. Meet Amber Appleton and make up your own mind.)
Call number: YA QUICK; YA CD QUICK (Teen Room)
Reviewed by kate the librarian