Ferocity Summer

( 1 )


"An engaging, realistic journey into drug addiction and bad decision making. Grosso's Ferocity Summer is a riveting read."
—A.S. King, author of the Printz honor book Please Ignore Vera Dietz

Would you rather be dead and know it, or alive and not know it?

Scilla Davis is haunted by a horrible accident that she was involved in last summer—a drunken, reckless joyride that ended in tragedy. With a big trial ...

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Ferocity Summer

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"An engaging, realistic journey into drug addiction and bad decision making. Grosso's Ferocity Summer is a riveting read."
—A.S. King, author of the Printz honor book Please Ignore Vera Dietz

Would you rather be dead and know it, or alive and not know it?

Scilla Davis is haunted by a horrible accident that she was involved in last summer—a drunken, reckless joyride that ended in tragedy. With a big trial looming, life seems empty, unreal, and utterly hopeless. It’s especially painful watching her best friend, Willow, slowly destroy herself with pills and booze. Yet Scilla can’t seem to wrest Willow—or herself—from a path of self-destruction.

But there might be a possible escape from this nightmare. As a dangerous new drug called Ferocity sweeps the nation, an FBI agent asks Scilla to turn narc and help locate the Ferocity kingpin. In exchange, she could avoid conviction for her role in the accident. All she has to do is deceive and betray people she’s known all her life . . .

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Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Jane Murphy
This frenetically paced, older-teen novel treads dangerously on the slippery slope of the consequences of one' s involvement with drugs and reckless behavior. It serves as a caveat to teens who have no sense of their own mortality. The ongoing metaphor of Sherman's march in the Civil War is a little off the mark; a better one might be a train wreck. This book is definitely for the oldest of the teen audience with intense language and sexuality, and adult readers will devour it as well, remembering their narrow escapes during their adolescence. The plot builds with back story and flashback. It takes the reader a while to understand what happened to Scilla, the young protagonist. Her judgement has been clouded by her excesses, but her loyalty to her best friend remains steadfast. The mixed messages adolescents receive from their elders also ring true here. This is recommended for medium to large young adult library collections. Reviewer: Jane Murphy
School Library Journal
Gr 10 Up—Scilla Davis realizes that bad decision after bad decision has forced her into a toxic descent. Her absent father, bitter mom, feelings of alienation, drinking and drug use, plummeting grades, and loveless sex life have turned the 17-year-old into a confused and self-doubting teenager. Her freefall ends with a substance-fueled boating accident that has fatal results. Now, as Scilla waits for her trial, she watches her friend Willow, also culpable in the tragedy, plunge into heavy-duty drug abuse. An FBI agent offers her a way to reduce charges if Scilla helps with identifying the dealer pushing "Ferocity," a new designer drug that can short-circuit a user's brain. If she wants to save herself, she'll have to expose her hook-up partner (a low-level dealer) and Willow, his sister. Because of her failing grade in history, Scilla needs to write a paper on General Sherman and the parallels she draws between his life and hers are more distracting than edifying. Choppy sentences reflect Scilla's emotionally exhausting panic as she continues to sink deeper and deeper. Despite clumsy similes, some clunky writing, and parts that strain credulity, Grosso's dark effort will be in hot demand by some older teens.—Susan Riley, Mamaroneck Public Library, NY
Kirkus Reviews
A troubled teen tries to understand how her life has hit rock bottom in this clumsily executed, issue-cluttered novel. Seventeen-year-old Scilla lives in a low-income dump, her best friend, Willow, is a drug addict and she keeps making out with Willow's drug-dealing brother, Randy, even though she suspects she might be gay. In addition, she killed a woman while driving a speedboat drunk last summer. Her trial is coming up, and she might get a deal if she agrees to trade information on Randy's drug connections, but first she'll have to survive an attempted convenience-store robbery, a mob panicked by lightning at a concert and a multiple-vehicle car accident. Parts of Scilla's history essay on Sherman's March and anecdotes about a fictional designer drug named Ferocity muddy the plotline even further. Scilla's cliché-ridden, unrealistically self-aware voice is didactic at best and doesn't even begin to approximate how a teenager speaks at worst: "I've discovered a world that can't be experienced by those who stick to the straight and narrow, and I like this world immensely at times…. Peer pressure is a difficult thing to resist, mostly because in all of us, there is a part that has no desire to resist." While peer pressure may be difficult to resist, this novel is not. (Fiction. 14 & up)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780738730707
  • Publisher: Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.
  • Publication date: 5/8/2012
  • Pages: 278
  • Age range: 12 years
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

A former children's librarian and newspaper editor, Alissa Grosso is the author of the young adult novels Popular and Ferocity Summer. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) and currently works as a sales consultant for a book distributor. Grosso grew up in New Jersey, where she graduated from Lenape Valley Regional High School, and earned a bachelor's degree in English from Rutgers University. She now lives in the Philadelphia area.

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Read an Excerpt

Open publication - Free publishing - More addiction

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 1 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 4, 2012

    Scilla is the perfect protagonist for this book as she is so

    Scilla is the perfect protagonist for this book as she is so easy to relate to. Teens likely will have either experienced first-hand or heard of events like the ones that happened to Scilla in the novel. She can be hard-headed and ridiculous as a character at times, but overall she is representative of the typical female teen. She is faced with several hard choices in this book, choices that include drinking and drugs. The reader will be side by side with her in the story, it is told from her perspective (first person). Perhaps because the book is written in first person or because Scilla is so easy to relate to that the reader will find it easy to connect to Scilla's character, even when Scilla makes it difficult to like her.

    Scilla is a tad annoying in the story. Her character is rude and aggressive towards others, at times, and she has a few confusing romantic feelings. Her character can be gritty just like the storyline, but somehow it all works. The other characters could be the readers' friends or people the reader knows. They tie in quite well to the story.

    The plot itself was slightly unbelievable at times, but mostly retained a remarkable sense of realism. This book is heavily driven by the plot, the reader will find that the book is fast-paced and hard to put down. The Goodreads summary above does a terrific job of summing the book up without giving too much away. Overall, this book is recommended to young adult/adult readers.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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