Sunday, January 3, 2016

Connect the Stars by David Teague and Marisa de los Santos - ESSENTIAL

Teague, David and  Marisa de los Santos Connect the Stars, 341 pgs. Harper Collins, 2015. $16.99. Language: G; (0 swears); Mature Content: G; Violence: PG.  

13-year-old Audrey knows when someone is lying.  She has had this gift/problem all her life, but entering middle school, where everyone seems to lie, all the time, about everything, has turned her into a friendless hermit.  Her one last friend commits the ultimate betrayal, and now Audrey is facing a summer alone.  Aaron remembers everything. Everything he’s ever read, seen, heard or glanced at.  He’s the captain of the Quiz Masters team and the smartest boy in school.  But his knowledge is limited to his memory.  He is not very good at less concrete information, like how someone is feeling, and after a disastrous competition at school, Aaron is also facing a summer of unanswered questions.  
Both Audrey and Aaron are sent to a 6 week “survival” camp in the desert of New Mexico, where, with Kate (who is really good at ‘walking in someone’s shoes’) and Louis (who is hyper-sensitive to every noise, touch and sound) they form the “fearless four” a team that helps them teach each other the skills they lack.  And when Daphne, the camp bully goes missing, the fearless four seem to be the only ones who can find her and save her.  

This beautifully written adventure was a real page turner.  Told in alternating chapters from Audrey’s and then Aaron’s perspective, the life lessons about friendship, know it alls, bullies and surviving your own personal problems will hit home for most middle school readers.  MS - ESSENTIAL Lisa Librarian

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