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This book introduces a character named James who is being released from jail. He really only has two people in his life who help him get along. The first is his girlfriend Lilly who he is madly in love with and the second is an older gentleman named Leonard who is rich beyond belief. James met both of them in rehab where all three of them were previously addicted to drugs and alcohol. He fell madly in love with Lilly and Leonard became so attached to him he asked to be his second father. The book starts on the night before James release when he gets a call from Lilly whose grandma died. She needs James but he is unable to come till tomorrow. James arrives the next day to find Lilly committed suicide. Now James is lost and empty and wants to turn back to alcohol but fights his way through it. He moves back to Chicago where he tries to recover day to day and is visited by his friend Leonard now and then. This book was written in a way that even though it wasn’t very exciting the author somehow managed to keep your attention because we didn’t know what James was going to do next. Most readers have never been inside the head of a drug addict. The choices he made seem very realistic and you can relate to him easily as a person and understand his emotions. The book seems like it is setting up for a huge plot development but as I read on nothing that interesting was happening to James’s life. It was just day to day stuff with very minor, trivial conflict. I had other books to read and could not finish this book willingly, only to wait for nothing more to happen. I stopped reading 225 pages into the book. The intended audience of this book is just people in general, no specific target I can assume. If you lost a love one or were addicted to drugs it might be something a reader could relate to. However I can clearly say that this book is intended for a mature audience who can comprehend what James is feeling. This book can be interesting to either gender but it really does center more on that of a males life and problems. I would recommend this book to people who want to get inside the head of a drug addict and understand how hey feel.
The main character in Stuck in Neutral is Shawn McDaniel. He lives in the town of Bell. Shawn has Cerebral Palsy (C.P). When he was born a blood vessel in his body burst in such a spot that he was disabled for life. He can’t walk or even talk; he has no control over any of his bodily functions. Shawn has one more problem. He thinks his dad wants to kill him. The book was written from the perspective of Shawn, the narrator. This was an intriguing perspective to explore what it must be like to use your brain when your body is severely disabled. It also was a realistic presentation of Shawn’s family trying to cope with understanding him. The characters are well developed for how short the book is. The setting is lacking, but the setting was not the main point of the story. The conclusion doesn’t provide closure; the conclusion to this book was terrible. I believe the intended reading audience for Stuck in Neutral is mainly High School aged students and young adults. An age group break down would be from 16-38+. This book could go towards either gender. I think it would be a meaningful book for anyone to consider what it’s like to have a severe disability or to live with someone who has a severe disability. The book was short and easy reading, but very thought provoking. I would recommend this book to anyone who needs a quick and easy read, but with a warning to be prepared for the emotional impact of the ending.
“Polly” is a novel written by Amy Bryant about a girl living in the suburbs of America. The main characters name is Polly. Each chapter of the story is wrapped around a different guy throughout her life. I found the characters in this book very odd. She has some pretty unique relationships with about 8 different guys. With each one of them, it seems like Polly doesn’t really know what she’s doing or what she wants until the end. She’s just kind of going with the flow, in and out with different guys from middle school through college. She’s never really shown having much emotion. The book is written well, but not to any extreme. The subject matter is presented pretty realistically, although there are a few odd things that happen to her. The characters aren’t developed very well. I felt like I couldn’t really connect with many of them. It felt a little more like the story was about robots than people. The subject is not presented very realistically either. However, the setting was developed well and I was able to imagine the scenery in my head most of the time. The conclusion provided minimal closure, but it wasn’t horrible. The intended audience for this book would be almost any girl. Mostly, girls in high school would like to read this book. Polly’s story also goes through middle school and college, so girls in those age groups might also like to read it. Some of the material may be a little too mature for middle school girls in terms of sexual activity though. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes reading about relationships in the girl’s point of view. Also, to anyone who would like to read a weird, random, short book about the life of an American girl and her experiences.
Holden Caulfield is the main character and narrator; Stradlater is Holden’s roommate at Pencey Prep; Allie is Holden’s younger brother who died and Phoebe is Holden’s ten-year-old sister. The book’s setting is in New York City and the surrounding area. Holden Caulfield is a troubled young man who doesn’t have the will or discipline to succeed in school. He’s failing every class except English in which he has an A. He is very troubled by the phonies he sees in the world. He is very devastated by the loss of his younger brother to leukemia. His younger sister Phoebe seems to be the only person he admires. He decides to leave school 2 days early, seeing that he’s already being expelled. From that point on Holden’s trip begins which ranges from eating breakfast to having prostitutes in his hotel room to going home to reconnect with his sister. The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger is written very interestingly. I personally really enjoyed the writing style used to tell the accounts of Holden’s couple of days that he describes in the book from recollection. The subject matter presented in the book is straight from Holden’s personal experiences. The characters were well-developed but described from Holden’s point of view. The setting wasn’t anything all that amazing. The book was more centered on Holden himself and his thoughts. The conclusions provided little to no closure which disappointed me. I’m not exactly sure what the intended audience is for this book. My best guess is that anyone of high school age and beyond would enjoy this book. For a better break down of the ages, I’d say anywhere from 16-70 years. This book doesn’t really seem to lean towards one gender. I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in the Lennon assassination because the killer based his reasons for killing John Lennon on this book. I also think this book would be meaningful to everyone who has experienced the difficulties of growing up.
Peter Jenkins is young man who is part of a generation fed up with the war in Vietnam, assassinations, and greedy corporations. Recently divorced and newly graduated from Alfred College in New York State, he sets out with on his quest with his dog Cooper, a large mixed Malamute. Peter’s quest is to walk across America to see if this country is worth living in. He’s giving America one last chance. Peter also decides to document his journey on foot for The National Geographic, the magazine. Along the way he discovers the “real America” in the people he meets. He realizes he wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. Peter included tremendous amounts of detail in this book. Everything is presented in a realistic fashion. Every event that you read about really happened to Peter and Cooper. Peter describes his experiences and everyone he meets in very vivid detail. He also describes his surroundings as he travels so you feel like you’re right there with him. The ending of the book provides total closure. Peter ties up all loose ends. Walk across America is intended for a high school audience. The book targets pretty much any age group from 9th grade to adulthood. I believe this book targets both genders. It has very interesting events that both sexes would enjoy. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes adventure stories. This book helped me get a better perspective of America.