Doing Time: Notes from the Undergradby Rob Thomas, David Gale (Editor), Rod Thomas
This collection of ten short stories by acclaimed YA author Rob Thomas details high school students fulfilling one of their requirements for graduation: 200 hours of community services. Returning to the high school setting of his novel "Slave Day", "Thomas challenges readers to look beneath the surface of these typical teenagers and realize that they are rarely the people they first seem to be. . . . The stories are well-written, interesting, provocative, and humorous, and often have a surprise ending" ("School Library Journal", starred review). An ALA Best Book for Young Adults.
In the first chapter, as part of a college course, Randall is assigned to follow up on nine high-school seniors who had to do community service projects to graduate, by interviewing them and the participants in their projects. He's a skeptic after his own experience on the receiving end of someone else's community-service project a decade earlier. The next nine chapters are more like short stories, each one a self-contained first-person account by one of the nine seniors: Some perform their service with honor, some with cynicism. Thomas covers a lot of territory and demands that readers keep track of several characters and activities; each narrator establishes himself or herself, describes the mission, learns a lesson, or hits a defining moment, then checks out, without a reappearance of Randall for perspective or hindsightwhich leaves the book's premise, and readers, dangling. It's a promising workit just doesn't feel finished.
Meet the Author
Rob Thomas is the creator and executive producer of the television series Veronica Mars, He is also a co-creator and executive producer of the cable television series Party Down. In addition to his television work, Thomas is the author of five young adult books for Simon & Schuster including Rats Saw God, Slave Day, Satellite Down and Doing Time: Notes From the Undergrad. He lives in Austin, Texas with his wife Katie, daughter Greta and son Hank. Visit him at slaverats.com.
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