Amplified

( 12 )

Overview

When privileged 17-year-old Jasmine gets kicked out of her house, she takes what is left of her savings and flees to Santa Cruz to pursue her dream of becoming a musician. Jasmine finds the ideal room in an oceanfront house, but she needs to convince the three guys living there that she's the perfect roommate and lead guitarist for their band, C-Side. Too bad she has major stage fright and the cute bassist doesn't think a spoiled girl from over the hill can hack it. . . .

 ...

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Amplified

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Overview

When privileged 17-year-old Jasmine gets kicked out of her house, she takes what is left of her savings and flees to Santa Cruz to pursue her dream of becoming a musician. Jasmine finds the ideal room in an oceanfront house, but she needs to convince the three guys living there that she's the perfect roommate and lead guitarist for their band, C-Side. Too bad she has major stage fright and the cute bassist doesn't think a spoiled girl from over the hill can hack it. . . .

 

In this fresh new novel by critically acclaimed author Tara Kelly, Jasmine finds out what happens when her life gets Amplified.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
When Jasmine tells her father that she wants a year off before attending Stanford, he gives her 15 minutes to pack her things and move out. So Jasmine drives down to Santa Cruz, guitar in hand, to pursue her dream of making music. When her car breaks down upon arrival, she meets sarcastic yet sexy Sean at a garage where (nonautomotive) sparks fly. As Jasmine looks for an apartment, Sean quickly shows up in her life again, this time as a member of the band C-Side, which is searching for a new guitarist/roommate. Jasmine scores the spot in the band, but she’s keeping a secret: she’s never performed live. This secret and a few others cause their share of problems in this highly entertaining story of romance, rock music, and a girl coming into her own. Jasmine will have readers in her corner from the first flip remark out of her mouth, and Kelly’s (Harmonic Feedback) background in music is evident in her electric descriptions of Jasmine’s evolution as a performer. Ages 14–up. (Oct.)
From the Publisher
“Jasmine is a talented guitarist and a hard worker, but her almost crippling stage  fright and defensive attitude create barriers that could end her dream before it starts.  She is realistically imperfect but likable, and, with time, she convinces her bandmates  and herself that she is much more than a spoiled wannabe.” —School Library Journal

 

“…readers will be rooting for her [Jasmine] and her newfound family to make it big.” —BCCB

 

"...inspiring, heartwarming, and engaging." —VOYA

 

“…an engaging story about a girl following her musical dreams, and readers will be drawn to Jasmine’s wit.” —Booklist

 

“Kelly’s (Harmonic Feedback) background in music is evident in her electric descriptions of Jasmine’s evolution as a performer.” —Publishers Weekly

 

“A treat for industrial-rock lovers; a pleasant summer read for others.” —Kirkus Reviews

Children's Literature - Cynthia Levinson
The title of this novel is, appropriately, a descriptive riff on rock music, which is the story's narrative vehicle, and on the life of its main character. When 17-year-old Jasmine Kiss tells her strict father that she wants to defer enrolling in Stanford for a year so she can pursue her musical interests, he kicks her out of the house. Unrepentant and undeterred, she heads to Santa Cruz, where her car breaks down in front of a garage. There, she meets Sean, a prickly, attractive guy who not only plays in a band, cleverly called C-Side, but is also looking for a guitarist and a roommate. Jasmine convinces the group, which also includes Bryn and Felix, to take her on as a band member and take her in as a roommate. But, she neglects to share two essential facts: she's never performed live, and she has stage fright. Fortunately, the lead singer, Veta, becomes a loyal, if difficult, friend and helps Jasmine through a mortifying gig and her conflicted romance, which is presented as powerful but not graphic. Felix balances Jasmine's intensity with a sense of humor while Bryn adds his own troubles as bandleader. Music scenes and musical imagery drive the tone and action. Both are realistic and compelling. Oddly, Jasmine's relationship with her father is not fully resolved. But the strength and complexity of the other relationships, Jasmine's musical and emotional growth, and the musical environment will keep male and female readers entertained and moved. Reviewer: Cynthia Levinson
VOYA - Jan Chapman
Seventeen-year-old Jasmine is a talented guitarist living in a comfortably wealthy California suburb until she is kicked out by her father for refusing to go to college right after high school. Now she is on the street with very little money, no job, and no place to live. When she spots an ad for a lead guitarist in a local indie rock band, she decides, against all odds, to go for it. But a bad case of stage fright, plus some attitude from some of the band members, may sink her chances. Still, she will do anything to avoid having to go home and admit her father was right. Kelly has a talent for bringing the edgy music scene to life, as amply demonstrated in her first novel, Harmonic Feedback (Macmillan, 2010/VOYA October 2010). Her writing, although marred at times by too much dialogue and excessive metaphor, rings true when she is describing the music world. The teen characters are vividly realized, although the adult characters, especially Jasmine's father, seem a bit one-dimensional. Nevertheless, this sophomore effort from Kelly has enough energy and heat to make it quite appealing to older teen readers who love indie rock music. Recommend this one to fans of Sarah Dessen or Ellen Hopkins. Reviewer: Jan Chapman
VOYA - Taarika Hegde
Amplified is inspiring, heartwarming, and engaging. The relatable and strong female narrative voice of the main character, Jasmine, is a refreshing take on a story that focuses on the mainly male-dominated music of rock and roll. It is Jasmine's passion for music and the bonds she shares with her fellow bandmates that truly make the book enjoyable. Greater depth could have been added, however, if deeper insight into Jasmine's relationship with her father had been explored. 4Q, 4P. Reviewer: Taarika Hegde, Teen Reviewer
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—When Jasmine's wealthy, demanding father tells her he will not support her decision to put off college for a year to pursue her musical dreams, she sets out to Santa Cruz, CA, to find a job, an apartment, and a band to prove that she can make it. Somewhat shy, she is rebelling against her father's control in the wake of her mother abandoning them. Jasmine is a talented guitarist and a hard worker, but her almost crippling stage fright and defensive attitude create barriers that could end her dream before it starts. She is realistically imperfect but likable, and, with time, she convinces her bandmates and herself that she is much more than a spoiled wannabe. Although the bad-girl and bad-boy musicians remain stock figures, most secondary characters are developed enough to make them more than just background filler, and they react in ways with which readers can identify. A romantic interest is included but does not distract from the story, which focuses mainly on Jasmine's finding confidence in herself and her decisions. This novel will be of particular interest to music fans.—Natasha Forrester, Multnomah County Library, Portland, OR
Kirkus Reviews

This chronicle of a shy guitarist's summer living with a rock band poses bigger questions than it answers but tells a likable story nonetheless.

Kicked out of the house by her strict father after she decides to defer her college admission, Jasmine is determined to prove that she can make it on her own. Looking for a room to rent in Santa Cruz, she finds an industrial band seeking a live-in bandmate and tries out. Kelly (Harmonic Feedback, 2010) relates each musical challenge—Jasmine's tryout, a bad gig, a final, triumphant performance—as a tense action sequence. The author gives enough imagery and context that even the musically uninitiated will appreciate her descriptions, though readers who understand licks, riffs, arpeggios, EBows and wah pedals will get a fuller effect. Veta, the moody-but-loyal lead singer, is the best realized of the colorful cast; other characters feel a bit more sketched in. A romance between Jasmine and one of the band members is satisfyingly paced, and the energy between them is as charged (without being graphic) as some of the scenes between Jasmine and her guitar. Some of the novel's big questions are left open: Jasmine's relationship with her father, for instance, or what it means to start a relationship with a roommate.

A treat for industrial-rock lovers; a pleasant summer read for others. (Fiction. 14 & up)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780805092967
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
  • Publication date: 10/25/2011
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 781,709
  • Age range: 14 - 18 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Tara Kelly adores variety in her life. She's a YA author, one-girl-band, web designer, video editor, digital photographer, and literary agent intern. She lives in Oregon with her ten guitars, supercool bf, and a fluffy cat named Maestro.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 12 )
Rating Distribution

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(8)

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Sort by: Showing all of 12 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 3, 2012

    Awesome Book

    It was an amazing book. I couldn't put it down. Tara Kelly did an awesome job writing this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 25, 2012

    Awesome

    I loved this book it was awesome. A must read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 9, 2012

    Loved it

    Loved it

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  • Posted August 8, 2012

    Amplified by Tara Kelly is a book that is entertaining and can b

    Amplified by Tara Kelly is a book that is entertaining and can be enjoyed by people of any age. Young adult readers can relate to the main character in her struggles to follow her dreams while figuring out her identity along the way.

    In this book, a 17-year old girl named Jasmine gets kicked out of her house for not wanting to follow her father’s plans after high school. She takes the little that she has and moves to Santa Cruz, California to pursue a music career. Jasmine soon finds a house with three male roommates and convinces them to joins their band as the lead guitarist. There’s just one down fall…..she has stage fright. She struggles to overcome her fear and follow her dream.

    High school students would like this book because they can relate to Jasmine. Many teens love music and dream of joining a band or being famous. On the other hand teens can also relate to how it feels to argue with parents over plans after high school and some may know what it’s like to get kicked out of their home. Jasmine serves as a good role model because she shows that anything can happen if you persevere and follow your dreams. Tara Kelly shows the reality of life decisions, dedication, and believing in one’s self.

    I would recommend this book to parents and teachers because it offers an authentic reading experience for young adult readers.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 3, 2012

    Jasmine Kiss just graduated from high school and wants a break


    Jasmine Kiss just graduated from high school and wants a break before College and instead of her Dad understanding, she ended up getting kicked out of the house with only her car, guitars, a few clothes and savings she'd saved up since forever. Jasmine drove out to Santa Cruz, her car broke down and she has no where to go. She's stuck walking around trying to find a place to stay before night comes.

    Taking a break from paranormal books couldn't get any better. After starting Amplified, I couldn't put it down. I know reading is basically like watching a movie. But for me, only some books are movie material and this one is definitely one of them.

    Reading about how Jasmine Kiss, who is only seventeen, struggled to find a place to live and a band to join on her own. It was admirable. I'm twenty and I don't think I can do anything without my family in the picture. The realism in this book had a huge presence that makes a reader connect to every character and scene in this book. It simply blew me away.

    Jasmine is snarky, defensive, and guarded at all times. She's a character who doesn't want to show any type of feeling to anyone but the reader can't help notice that she's just a little girl struggling in a big bad world, so her facade doesn't fool anyone. The secondary characters on the other hand contributed so well into the story. Its hard to get secondary characters stick to the readers but this book nailed it. Congrats to Tara!

    Music is a big factor in the entire book. And the descriptions of Jasmine's band on stage doing a few set lists is written very well. I'm thinking either, Tara Kelly did her homework or she has a hell lot of music experience to write about live performances like she's actually been up there on stage.

    Overall, the only thing the book lacks is a good climax. The book was good but when it ended it felt abrupt and cut short like some pages were missing. Aside from that, the book was brilliantly written, with a unique concept and characters a reader could relate to. A definite unputdownable book for the teens!

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  • Posted January 20, 2012

    Awesome!!

    Recent high school graduate Jasmine Kiss (yes, that is her real name) has just left home for good after an argument with her father. He wants her to go straight to college. She wants to take a year off, join a band, and find out if she has what it takes for a career in music. Now she's stuck with no place to sleep, no job, and a beat up Jetta belching smoke. After perusing Craigslist she finds the perfect situation advertised: "Looking for a live-in lead guitarist (industrial rock)." The catches are "guys preferred" and must "be comfortable on stage." Jasmine is very much female, even if she does dress like a guy, and she's never played outside her dad's garage. Still, she gives it a shot and manages to get the room and a spot in the band. Now she just has to learn to trust her bandmates, and herself, before their big, career-changing gig in less than a month.

    I absolutely loved this book. Jasmine is a very believable character and I identified with her fears and doubts, even if some of the music lingo went over my head. The realistic plot moved quickly but evenly, carrying me through the book at a rapid pace. I devoured this one, and recommend it to teens who love alternative music, quirky characters, and realistic fiction.

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  • Posted December 8, 2011

    Loved it!

    I loved being taken into this world of music, excellence, and pursuit of passion. As usual, Kelly delivers a raw, real, and thoroughly entertaining read.

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  • Posted October 11, 2011

    Amazing Book and Author!!!!!

    My engish teacher let me have a prerealsed copy of this book and I was blown away! Tara Kelly is an amzing new (or at least new to me) author that I love. Her stories have just the right amount of description and talk. I highly recommend this book to anymore who loves music and who would love a great, fun read!! :)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 18, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 6, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2012

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