Monday, June 6, 2011

The Implosion of Aggie Winchester by Lara Zielin

Release Date: August 4, 2011 from Putnam Juvenile

From Author


Sixteen-year-old Aggie Winchester couldn't care less about who's elected prom queen-even if it's her pregnant Goth-girl best friend, Sylvia Ness. Aggie's got bigger things to worry about, like whether or not her ex-boyfriend wants to get back together and whether her mom will survive cancer.

But like it or not, Aggie soon finds herself in the middle of an unfolding prom scandal, largely because her mom, who is the school's principal, is rumored to have burned prom ballots so Sylvia won't be elected queen. Aggie's own investigation makes her wonder if the election could be dirty on both sides.

I was lucky enough to read Lara Zielin's first book, Donut Days, before it hit shelves. It was a wonderful, sweet read that left me feeling light and happy. So, I was thrilled to get a chance to read this book early, too.

Aggie's story couldn't be more different from that of Emma (star of Donut Days). This was a completely different book in every way, but I loved it just as much and maybe even a little bit more. Aggie is lost, surly, and an outsider of the highest order. Her and her friend move through the school striking fear in the hearts of their fellow classmates. Aggie's best friend, Sylvia, is her life. When Sylvia gets pregnant, though, things start to change between them and Aggie's world is rocked. At the same time, she's dealing with her mother's diagnosis of cancer and the fact that her mother and her are constantly at odds.

This is a much edgier book than Donut Days, and probably a little more realistic. At it's heart, though, it is still the story of a girl trying to find herself and her own way in the world. It's wonderfully written and full of great characterization and dialogue. I really loved it and I grew to love Aggie as I read. I saw a lot of myself in Aggie and I couldn't help but root for her to find her way.

Check it out and check out Donut Days while you're at it. Two different books, with the same amount of heart.