Aguirre, Ann. The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things. Macmillan(Farrar Strauss/Feiwel&Friends/First Second/Henry Holt/Roaring Brook/Square Fish) 2015 328p $17.99 ISBN 978-1-250-04750-2 hs Conflict E-BN
Sage is well liked at school. She is perpetually leaving complimentary post-it notes on the lockers of unsuspecting students who need a boost, especially those who are being bullied. She moved in with her aunt three years ago after a family tragedy and remembers what it was like to not fit in at school. She has one friend, Ryan, who is her confidant, but even he knows little of her life prior to her moving in with her aunt. A new boy in town, Shane, who has a troubling past, becomes friendly with Sage, and they find they have a lot in common. As their relationship develops, Sage finds that having a variety of friends is fun and not scary, even though she is hiding a secret that she feels could turn her into a pariah. Readers will come to care for Sage and Shane, and will empathize with the devastating feelings that Sage experiences when her secret is revealed. The cliques and high-school behavior are all too believable, as jocks bully the most susceptible students, and kids are relegated to various cliques: the stoners, brains, jocks, and eco freaks. The novel features well-developed characters, a tight, believable plot, and just the right hint of secrecy, which is ultimately shattered in a devastating moment followed by a courageous reaction. This would be a powerful read for those who need to know how to react to adversity positively.
Summary: Sage has secrets that no one at school knows. She navigates her way through her junior year at school being kind and eco conscious, and finding first love, all the while fearing that secrets from her past will torpedo her hopes for the future. Grades 8-12.
School stories-Fiction, Conflict-Fiction --Lois McNicol