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Breaking Rank

Breaking Rank

4.4 20
by Kristen D. Randle

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To Baby, the outside world is a cold and lonely place. He has lived most of his life as a member of the silent, enigmatic group that calls itself the Clan—scorned and feared by classmates and neighbors.
It's up to Casey to see to it that Baby isn't alone when he's the only Clan member of his mysterious group to be placed in their high school's honors


To Baby, the outside world is a cold and lonely place. He has lived most of his life as a member of the silent, enigmatic group that calls itself the Clan—scorned and feared by classmates and neighbors.
It's up to Casey to see to it that Baby isn't alone when he's the only Clan member of his mysterious group to be placed in their high school's honors classes. She's his guide into the mainstream—a pretty, well-liked girl who wants to do the right thing. Like the rest of the Clan, Baby has never before participated in school. She helps him find a path; she makes it possible for him to see the Clan with a sharp outside light.
But what Baby is doing threatens both Clan and the Cribs, and it isn't long before Baby's and Casey's familiar worlds are shattered.

Kristen D. Randle has written a story that is absorbing and unusual, insightful and outspoken, about two teenagers whose lives become intertwined—and a collision that forces them to make difficult choices.

From Booklist: (starred review)
When 17-year-old Casey Willardson agrees to tutor Thomas Fairbairn, family and friends think she's crazy--and in danger. But as Casey and Thomas get to know each other, labels and preconceptions fall away, resulting in a deep understanding of shared human experiences and emotions, and ultimately a rewarding love that challenges both teens' long-held beliefs. This modern, insightful Romeo and Juliet story is a rare and notable contribution to the teen fiction genre. The alternating points of view and Randle's taut, poetic prose provide remarkable character depth and complexity. Thomas, in particular, is a fascinating character, whose conversations embody the joy of learning and incorporate the works of classic philosophers and writers in ways that may show readers the relevance and rewards of learning the masters. Gritty, smart, and realistic, the novel perceptively explores issues of religion, sex and sexual abstinence, peer pressure, and integrity with grace and compassion. Despite some religious overtones, there is no preaching here, only a well-communicated respect for making comfortable personal life choices, and allowing others the opportunity to do the same. A story of morality without judgment, this will encourage teens to look beyond appearances and deep within their own hearts. Shelle Rosenfeld -

Editorial Reviews

This novel challenges stereotypes and stigmas when an unprecedented friendship develops between two teens of rival high school groups. "Randle is adept at conveying ingrained prejudices as well as the frustration and alienation that leads some youths to forsake the `straight' world for a more friendly and accepting one of their own making.
Gail Richmond
Both teens become renegades; group conflict erupts as their friendship grows beyond books. Casey's own beliefs are strained as Thomas challenges society and learns the costs of conformity. Reminiscent of The Outsiders and West Side Story, Randle's novel is compelling reading. Romance, gang in-fighting, and high school classroom and social scenes are realistically detailed . . .powerful writing and a suspenseful, action-driven story will grab teen readers.

Product Details

Ponymoon Press
Publication date:
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
File size:
1 MB

Meet the Author

Kristen D. Randle, whose book titles include On the Side of the Angels, The Only Alien on the Planet, Slumming and The Gardener, lives a chaotic life cobbled out of the needs of children, dogs, horses and family. Peace is what she hopes for, but life is what she gets. And that life spills onto the pages of her books. She thinks it's worth living - which is good, considering the cost of it. She believes in happy endings, good people and the benefits of a dash of adventure.

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Breaking Rank 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 16 reviews.
bookworm_95 More than 1 year ago
I started reading this book for English class, but I finished it way before I had to. This book is amazing-it pulls you right in! The main idea behind the story is that Baby Brother "Baby" is in a group called the Clan. The Clan never participates in any school work, and barely attends enough to keep out of truancy court. But Baby takes tests that show that he should be in honors classes. In order to bring him up to speed, a teacher assigns his tutor to be a girl named Casey, who is the kind, compassionate, I-can-help-save-the-world kind of girl. She and Baby have nothing in common, yet they become friends, and as Casey and Baby's relationship hovers on the edge of friendship and something more, Baby and Casey's seperate worlds will try to step in to stop them. This book is fantastic for anyone who loves YA Romance, and a bit of independence :)
Guest More than 1 year ago
What attracted me to this book was the Paul Walker look-a-like on the cover, but the story was very good. The Clan is very strange indeed, and I thought it was sad that, just because they kept to themselves and didn't participate, people thought that they were criminals or dumb or something. Not everyone that dresses in all black is bad. The Clan were (was?) actually a group of highly intelligent guys who looked down upon the inadequate education that they got in school, so they became apprentices to each other to teach each other the arts, math, science, etc.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I may only be 13, but I am an avid reader (and a big fan of the classics and Annette Curtis Klause) so I think I have a righ to rant about a great book like this one. It was poignant and hopeless. Baby was totally believable, a whole 'nother person in my life for the time it took me to read the book. It touched my heart. Not because it also becamse a love story, even though it was a beautiful one, but the things he went through. I actually cried at this book. It is sad, but it is wonderful and has a lovely ending, full closure.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Almost everyday. For about 3 hours?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
9PM to 10:30 PM daliy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I don't make my presence known, but I'm always watching over the camp when I'm on and will step in if need be. I'm on every day for about six to seven hours.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
In the morning and at night rangeing from 4 o'clock to 4 in the morning
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Every day
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Post your name and how often your on here.
Morg- More than 1 year ago
I was recently assigned this book in my English class. I had every intention of hating it and not even reading the whole thing. I changed my mind quickly after the first page. This book took me by surprise and i ended up absolutely adoring it. The characters are ones you can love so easy, especially Baby, and the whole plot is just amazing. I read this book in one day, and i often don't do that. I just couldn't put it down. READ THIS BOOK!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
The book 'Breaking Rank' is about a boy named Baby who is involed with some wrong people and his mother is worried about him and his education. So his mom had him take some tests to see if he could take honor classes to try to get him away from the people that he was hanging around. After Baby took the tests he was accepted into honor classeshe also got tutor named Casey. She helped him with everything from his homework to the class projects that he need help on. In the end Baby realized how good it is to be on the good side. My thoughts on the book were good because I'm 16 and it is a real situation that some kids can go through. That is why I think it would be a good book for a high schooler to read
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this book last year in my high school English class for solitary reading sessions. What first attracted me to the book was the cover. It's so unique that I just had to begin reading it. After only a few pages, I had to read more! It's definitely a great book for teenagers. I fell in love with the main character, Baby, instantly. He is as unique as the cover of the book is! I love this book and I definitely recommend it to anyone who enjoys teen fiction books.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book in one of my favorites! The characters were so realistic and likable. I couldn't put it down, literally. I sat for an entire evening and read it! It had such a satisfying ending too! I would recommend it to anyone.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a very good book. It is similar to a modern day Romeo and Juliet except that no one dies. Kristen Randle pulls the reader in and the reader is in engrossed.