Briana's Gift [NOOK Book]

Overview

Thirteen-year-old Casey's mother always said that Casey's sixteen-year-old sister marched to the beat of a different drummer. But it isn't until Briana runs away with an older boy that Casey begins to understand what her mother meant. When Briana returns home alone and pregnant, Casey and her mother try to help Briana come to terms with her options.

It was already complicated to think about Briana's choices and then things change suddenly ...
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Briana's Gift

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Overview

Thirteen-year-old Casey's mother always said that Casey's sixteen-year-old sister marched to the beat of a different drummer. But it isn't until Briana runs away with an older boy that Casey begins to understand what her mother meant. When Briana returns home alone and pregnant, Casey and her mother try to help Briana come to terms with her options.

It was already complicated to think about Briana's choices and then things change suddenly again. When Briana is in a serious accident, Casey's mother sees things one way. Although Casey understands her mother's reaction, she feels she must try to convince her mother to make a different decision. Casey needs to grow up fast and do what she can to maintain Briana's legacy. Will she be able to make her mother understand that there is only one way to accept Briana's gift?


From the Hardcover edition.
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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Carrie Hane Hung
December is a month that holds sad memories for thirteen-year-old Susanna (Sissy) as she reveals the changing relationships within her family and between her close friends. In December, her father died in an accident at work. In another December, her mother could not work because of rheumatoid arthritis. In this December, Briana, Sissy's sixteen-year-old sister, runs away with her boyfriend to Los Angeles. Her mother is resigned that Briana has made her choice and will not change her mind. Eight months later, Briana returns home to Tennessee via bus and hitchhiking. She is no longer with her boyfriend and she is pregnant. Sissy looks forward to becoming an aunt while her mother considers the situation in an objective and practical manner by examining Briana's choices. Meanwhile, the long-time relationship of Sissy and her friends, Melody and Stu, transforms in nature as subtle indications of change becomes apparent with time. Then, an unexpected tragedy strikes Briana and lives are in the balance. Sissy and her mother have opposing opinions and they will need each other's strength to face the challenges ahead of them to find hope and promise.
VOYA - Angelica Delgado
Thirteen-year-old Sissy has disliked the holiday season ever since her father died in an accident two weeks before Christmas when she was five. Her rebellious teenage sister, Briana, runs away with her boyfriend shortly after school lets out for winter break, leaving Sissy and her sickly mother in poor spirits. The prodigal daughter returns a few months later, pregnant and alone. Sissy is overjoyed at the prospect of being an aunt, but her mother and Briana share a sobered attitude toward the imminent birth. When Briana collapses at work because of a brain aneurysm, Sissy and her mother are overwhelmed with grief and the impending responsibility of raising an infant. Sissy suddenly has a great deal with which to cope, from her first crush to convincing her mother not to give her niece up for adoption. As always, McDaniel pulls out all the melodramatic stops in this weepy read. And as always, this reviewer marvels at the author's ability to combine such incongruous topics as a pregnant brain-dead teenaged sister, an arthritic mother, and unrequited love into so few pages. The unrequited love story line is the most refreshing change to McDaniel's typical romantic endings. There are subtle differences in her use of colloquial dialogue, which offers an additional bonus. Her tissue-laden fans will rejoice in this newest addition to her teen angst literature genre.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375846588
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 3/11/2008
  • Sold by: Random House
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 472,189
  • Age range: 12 years
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Lurlene McDaniel
Lurlene McDaniel is the #1 author of inspirational fiction for young adults. The author lives in Chattanooga, TN.


From the Hardcover edition.
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Read an Excerpt

one



I'm probably the only girl in the world who hates the month of December. I know Christmas comes in December, but so what? Every bad, awful thing that's ever happened in my family has happened in December. Like when I was five and Daddy died in an accident at the steel mill just two weeks before Christmas and we had to move to Tennessee and live with Grandma. And when I was eight and Mom was told in the first week of December she had rheumatoid arthritis and so she couldn't work and had to set up her own at-home business. And when I was almost fourteen, my sister, Briana, ran away from home on a cold December Saturday, just after school let out for the holiday break.

Mom said later, "I should have seen it coming."

But neither of us had.

Our mother always said that Briana marched to the beat of a different drummer, which I totally got because I'm in the marching band at school and staying in step is a must. When she was just sixteen, Bree took off with Jerry Stevens, a nineteen-year-old guy Mom called "worthless, hateful and without a lick of sense," but that Bree swore she loved more than anything. Bree and Mom had lots of fights about Bree dating Jerry, and then on a Saturday morning when Mom had driven into town to Pruitt's Food Mart for groceries, Bree comes down the stairs with two suitcases and a duffel bag and drops them at the front door.

"Where you going?" I ask. I'm sprawled on the sofa watching a cartoon and eating Cheetos. I like the old cartoons; plus, it's a good way to spend a Saturday until Mom makes me do my chores, which wasn't going to happen until she came home from the store. My fingers are covered with orange Cheetos dust and I lick them.

Bree scowls. "That's disgusting." She looks out the high glass window of the door. "I'm leaving."

"For where?"

"Los Angeles."

"Why?"

"Me and Jerry are going to find jobs."

"You don't know anyone in Los Angeles," I remind her. We live in farm country, in Duncanville, a small town in middle Tennessee, three hours from Nashville, only forty minutes from Chattanooga, which I guess Bree figures are both too close to home.

"We're going clear across country, seeing everything there is to see on the way. When we get to Hollywood, we'll get a place of our own and be happy forever." Her green eyes sparkle.

"Mom's not going to let you go." Bree had taken off twice before and Mom had gotten the sheriff to fetch her home.

"It's different this time."

"How so?"

"I left a letter in my room. It explains everything."

"What about school?"

"I'm finished with school. I can quit if I want to. You finish school."

"But--"

A horn honks outside and Bree throws open the door and grabs her bags. "I'm out of here."

I follow her onto the front porch, stop when I see Jerry's pickup in our dirt driveway. He jumps out, hugs Bree and tosses her bags into the open bed. "What did you pack, girl? The kitchen sink?" He never looks my way.

Bree laughs and kisses him. She says to me, "Go inside, Sissy."

I'm still wearing my sleep T-shirt and my legs and feet are bare. The cold has sliced right through me and frozen me to the porch.

Bree shoots Jerry an apologetic look, runs back and puts her arms around me. "It'll be all right, Sissy. I know what I'm doing."

I feel all hollow, scared too. I don't want my sister to leave.

"I'll send you postcards."

I stand still, my arms glued to my sides, fighting hard not to cry. I'm careful not to touch her with my disgusting orange fingers. "Why do you want to leave?"

"I don't want to be stuck in this place forever. This is my chance to go places with someone I love and who loves me."

The truck's horn beeps and I see Jerry scowling from behind the wheel. Bree breaks away. "I can't keep Jerry waiting." She bounds off the porch, runs to the truck, gets inside and rolls down the window. She calls out, "Tell Mom not to worry. I know what I want. I love you."

My voice is stuck in my throat and I can't say anything. I stand on the porch shivering and watch them drive away. And find another reason to hate December.



When Mom comes home, I tell her what's happened and we go up to Bree's room together. The usually messy bedroom is neat and clean. The bed's made up with the old quilt Grandma sewed before she died and the closet holds only old summer T's and empty hangers. Mom picks up the letter propped on Bree's pillow. As I watch her stiffened fingers rip open the envelope, I cry. "Shush," she says, her eyes darting over the page.

"Wh-what's it say?"

"She and Jerry are getting married."

"Call the sheriff, Mom. You can stop them."

"Why? Once they're married, I have no say in her life."

"But school--"

"She's sixteen, Susanna. You can't stop a river from flowing downstream, and I can't stop Bree from going her own way. I should have seen it coming."

Shock waves roll over me. Briana is gone. Really and truly gone.

Mom gets to her feet and her orthopedic shoes shuffle on the wood floor. "Come on now and help me bring in the groceries."

Bring in the groceries? How can she think about groceries when her daughter, my only sister, has just run off to get married to a guy Mom hates? I swipe at my eyes. Mom puts her arm around my shoulder. "She'll be back, Sissy."

"When?"

"When he leaves her."

"But if they're married . . ."

"It's a lot easier to break promises than to keep them," Mom says. Her face looks sad. I still can't believe she isn't going to do anything to make Bree come back. "Come on now."

Mom shuts Bree's bedroom door behind us and we go downstairs.

From the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 40 )
Rating Distribution

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(29)

4 Star

(5)

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(5)

2 Star

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 40 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2008

    Amazing

    This was one of Lurlene McDaniel's best books. I read this one day none stop. Her books are amazing and people don't understand that she writes these books for them to get further knowledge about an illness. The characters of these books for teenagers who are dying, or in this case seventeen year olds getting pregnant then dying because of a tumor.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2007

    Heart Wrenching...

    Briana's Gift was an absolutely amazing book. Not all of Lurlene McDaniel books are love stories, the point of all of the books is to show that your life can change in a second and you need to live every second like it is your last. I personally enojoyed this book better than any of McDaniel's books. I think that everyone should read this book so that people will understand that getting pregnant at a young age is not only hurting you but also all of your family members who then have to take care of you and the baby. Unless, you have a case like this story where the mother dies... what would you feel like if you had to go and sit in a room with your sister and her body was there, but her soul wasnt. It would be very hard on everyone. I think this is one of the best writings from Lurlene McDaniel and I recomened it to everyone.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2006

    from the heart

    briana's gift is a book that is dear to my heart and can make anyone feel thankful. i hear about this book on a website and finally i find it and was amazed.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 2, 2006

    i love it

    it made me cry i loved it i finished in 1 day!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 11, 2013

    Brianna's gift

    The most AMAZING I have ever read. I read it in 25 minutes. I could not put it down!!!!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2013

    Hi

    This book is awesome but sad

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 16, 2012

    Live lach lavjf

    N

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2012

    Love this

    Love this author

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 15, 2012

    Loved it

    Read it!!!!!!!!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 24, 2012

    LOVED IT!!!!!!!!!!

    This book was amazing. Lurlene McDaniel is a wonderful writer. This can happen to anyone and reading all these books about real life illnesses. I feel so happy when the kept the baby!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 13, 2011

    Great+and+wonderful

    Great+and+amazing

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 16, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Just purely amazing

    I was a little worried when I first got into this book but by page 25 i was completly hooked! It really taught me a good life lessen and even made me cry! I was so happy that the ending kept going strong unlike how most books dont. I am for sure going to reread this many many times! READ THIS BOOK ITS GREAT!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 3, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Hmmmm....

    I was expectong more from this book then i got. I thought it was going to another good but sad Lurlene McDaniel book, but this was not her best book and i would not want any one to buy it instead of just getting it from the library! But here or some of the books that i did like by her:

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 11, 2008

    THE Best Book in the UNIVERSE!!!

    Briana's Gift, is the best book i have ever read. Even though it is sad, it was so GOOD! I read it all in one day because it was so Awesome. It starts off as a girl named Sissy'Susanna'. Her sister Briana runs away from home with an older boy, Jerry. About a year later, Briana comes home pregnant and alone. Even though Briana is 17, she begins to act more resoponsible. But then, something terribly sad happens. Susanna goes through a lot of terribe things. Her two Best friends, Melody and Stew are there for her. Susanna begins to develop a crush on her friend, Stew.But Melody and Stew have been acting weird lately. Sussana and her mother go through very hard times. You will not be dissapointed in this book.PLEASE READ IT!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 14, 2008

    The BEST BOOK EVER!!!!!!!!

    This was the first of many Lurlene McDaniel books I read. I read this book in 1 day!!! I just found it soo hard to put down. Then I kept searching and searching for more of her books, and I would buy practically every one I found. I would definately recommend this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 10, 2007

    Best Book Ever

    My name is Breanna, also and i love any book by Lurlene McDaniel. She is a very good author.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2007

    Hated it

    It had a Good Plot to the story. But if You are the type that Loves Reading McDaniel's Love Stories, It isn't Much in here. The Only Part Is when The Girl, Sissy Develops a Crush On her Friend, Stu. It Ended Up That Stu Was dating Sissy's Friend, Melody. I Didn't Like How she Lurlene Did That. Hopefully She Will Make another Book,Saying that Stu's Feeling Changed for her. HOPEFULLY Because im not the type to read a love story and the couple doesn't lives happily ever after. Well If you are like me, I Recommend You to Not read this Book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2007

    I LOVED IT!!!

    I read it in about 3 hours, I would read one chapter and then I would have to read the next. Some parts made me laugh, and some parts I just had tears in my eyes. This is ABSOLUTELY one of the best Lurlene McDaniel books I have ever read (ive read almost all of them). The writing in this book keeps the reader so captivated. If I could give it more stars, I would...I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone. Im definately going to reread Briana's Gift.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2007

    This 'binder full of pages' is magnificent

    Thirtheen-year-old Sissy odes December, it's the time of year everything horrible happens. In December her father died in a serious accident, and her Sissy's mom was diagnosed with a serious syptom that she cou'ldnt work, and the year her sister, Briana left house l.A with boyfriend. In August Briana returns alone and pregnant.Together(Sissy & Mother)they helpBriana Move on.....

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 1, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 40 Customer Reviews

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