Saturday, August 8, 2009
I'm Paul Volponi's number one fan!!!!!
Or so it feels like it sometimes. I'm a big advocate of his work, and sometimes I feel like I'm the only one. I'm not sure why more people do not know about Mr. Volponi. In my opinion he is one of the best young adult authors out there. Plus his books deal with male issues, which are so hard to find. All of his characters are strong, yet flawed and are very interesting. My male students love his books and even the reluctant readers are drawn into his fast paced stories. Response is Mr. Volponi's latest book and it is great.
Noah is a young black man with some issues. He got his girlfriend pregnant and isn't sure if he loves her. He is a super senior and is in his 5th year of high school. Noah hates working at the local burger joint because it doesn't make him enough money but he needs the job. Noah needs the cash for his baby daughter. He also needs the cash so his nagging girlfriend..or whatever she is..will get off his back.
Deciding he needs to make some quick cash, Noah and his friends decide to jack a car. The problem is things do not go as planned and he runs into three Italian boys. One bashes his head in with a baseball bat.
The community where Noah lives is divided. There are the blacks and the Italians and neither get along very well. The town is divide by this incident. Was it racially motivated? Or were the Italian boys protecting their neighborhood from thugs?
The reader watches as Noah struggles with the issues of race relations, prejudice, hatred, and his own desire to do something better with his life.
As with all Volponi novels this is a quick read. There is some language issues, but to be fair this has to be one of the tamer books by him. I believe the f bomb is only dropped a few times.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book and I cannot wait for the next one which is Homestrech and comes out September 22.