17 January 2013

The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen

If she knows nothing else, Jessica knows one thing for absolutely sure: She is a runner. Jessica lives for running, and is one of the best on her school's track team. She just beat her personal record in the 400 meter. But then, just a few days later, her team's bus was in an accident on the way home from a meet. One of their teammates was killed, and Jessica's leg had to be amputated.

Now Jessica doesn't know who she is. And she has no idea how she's supposed to figure it out while surrounded by well-meaning doctors, friends who don't know what to say to her, overbearing parents, and an irritating younger sister. Not to mention the guilt that she has over the financial troubles that her parents are having because of fighting insurance companies. But with the support of an undaunted best friend, her track team and coach, and something of a new cheering squad, Jessica begins to recognize that the finish line doesn't always have to be an ending, and she can finally see the new start that is unfolding in front of her.

Recommended for older middle grade readers and all high school girls. This is a fast-paced read with not only a positive message, but also really likable characters, which sometimes makes all the difference!

Reviewed by kate the librarian.

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