Blister is Susan Shreve's most popular character, and she's back to find out what happens when Cupid comes calling....
Blister was there for Jonah when he was the new student that everyone loved to hate. Blister was there for Jonah when he lied and said he was a big TV personality. And Blister was right alongside Jonah when he turned his lie into a real job at a television station, complete with his very own show.
But now everything has changed. Because Jonah is in trouble once again, and he's looking to Blister to be more than just a friend....
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Susan Shreve is the author of twelve novels, more than twenty books for children, and the co-editor of three anthologies. She teaches at George Mason University, where she is a founder of the MFA Creative Writing program. Along with her books, Shreve also wrote short essay documentaries for the Jim Lehrer News Hour, and had one of her books adapted into an NBC series.
Susan Shreve lives in Washington DC with her husband.
Entering Memorial Junior High is scary enough, but there are far worse changes in 13-year-old Blister Reed's life, including moving into a new house with her mother's surprise new boyfriend, and nearly losing her best friend Jonah. Wanting to be one of the popular boys, Jonah ignores her until, accused of shoplifting, he needs her help. On top of that, now he wants her to be his girlfriend. Feeling moody and out of control, Blister can't even count on herself. Luckily, her grandmother is still around to provide steady encouragement and the occasional lemon meringue pie. And happily, both the mother's boyfriend and "the creep across the street," who got Jonah into trouble, turn out to be better than she expected. This sequel to Blister (2001) stands on its own, with the events of Blister's elementary school years including a stillborn baby sister, a divorce and her father's remarriage smoothly woven in. Don't judge this by its chick-lit cover; this smoothly written family and friendship story perfectly captures the difficult balancing act of seventh grade. (Fiction. 10-14)
In this follow-up to Blister (2001), Alyssa, who adopted the nickname Blister during her parents' painful divorce, finds seventh grade to be rocky terrain. Her mother has a new boyfriend, and she feels abandoned by her best friend, Jonah, who leaves her to court the popular guys. Just as bewildering is the new attention she's getting from boys, and Blister has plenty of questions. While story threads seem a bit hastily tied together, the feelings and concerns are exactly right, from Blister's confusion about the father figures in her life to her anxiety about outfits and love: she likes her first kiss (but doesn't want to become the boy's girlfriend), and she worries about sex, which, while vaguely imagined, is still on the horizon ( Someday she would have a boyfriend and lie down in the backseat of a car with him. But not now.”) The eccentric supporting cast, especially Blister's show-tunes spouting grandmother, and Shreve's original, humorous voice round out a funny, poignant story that is just right for readers who, like Blister, have just begun to think about romance. Gillian Engberg
Gr 5-8 Alyssa Blister” Reed experiences a whirlwind of change during seventh grade she and her mother move in with her mother's new boyfriend, and best-friend Jonah repeatedly ditches her in his quest to fit in with the popular kids. When he runs away from home after being set up to take the blame for a theft, ever-resilient Blister seeks to rescue him. While coping with the internal tumult that defines early adolescence and the external changes forced upon her, the girl must figure out whom to trust and how to do the right thing for her friend. To add to her troubles, Jonah confesses that he wants more from Blister than just friendship. The breezy writing and tight plot move this stand-alone sequel to Blister (S & S, 2001) along at a clipped pace. Blister is a strong, believable protagonist whose dilemmas and conflicting emotions will resonate with tweens. Shreve deftly portrays the rockiness that typifies seventh grade through the endearing characters, subtle tone, and low-key wit that her readers have come to expect. And, while the cover indicates a fluffy read, there is much food for thought and discussion within the pages of this exceptional book. Rebecca M. Jones, Fort Myers-Lee County Library, FL
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