From What I Remember...

From What I Remember...

4.4 24
by Valerie Thomas

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This ultimate summer read tells a hilarious, poignant story in the classic tradition of a John Hughes movie.See more details below


This ultimate summer read tells a hilarious, poignant story in the classic tradition of a John Hughes movie.

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—On the morning of her high school graduation, valedictorian Kylie Flores wakes up in Mexico next to gorgeous and popular Max Langston with no recollection of how she got there. What follows is an account of the 48 hours leading up to her rude awakening. Told in the alternating voices of Kylie; her flamboyantly gay best friend, Will; her brother, Jake, who has Asperger's; Max; and his catty girlfriend, Lily, the story is pieced together. The authors touch upon many hot-button topics (homosexuality, crime, immigration, underage drinking, and family troubles) that would generally cause a story to suffer from a lack of focus, but, interestingly enough, it works here. There are definite holes in the plot, but the quick pace and the hot-and-cold relationship between Kylie and Max will keep readers interested and rooting for them until the very end. Far from flawless, the characters seem real. While Kylie's uptight yet impulsive girl-from-the-wrong-side-of-the-tracks is a walking contradiction at times—how does such a smart girl neglect to back up her work-in-progress screenplay?—readers can't help but identify with her insecurities and defense mechanisms. What could have been a cliché-riddled teen romp turns out to be a fun, adventurous, and romantic side trip into those final days of high school—Audrey Sumser, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Parma, OH
Children's Literature - Maria Lamattina EdD.
Imagine getting a chance—just before graduation—to clarify the misconceptions, likes, and dislikes established and held onto throughout high school? In this engaging novel, Kylie Flores, valedictorian and a bit of a social outcast, gets such a chance. Just before graduation, Kylie's English teacher assigns her class a project to work on in pairs. Kylie is partnered with Max Langston, an oh-so popular, oh-so gorgeous boy, with a beautiful girlfriend, Lily, who cannot believe her boyfriend's ill fortune in having to work on something with Kylie. As Kylie and Max begin their project, a series of improbable events occur, leaving them stranded in the Mexican town where Kylie's dad is from. She learns a great deal about her father, Max, and even herself, leaving Max equally surprised by what he learns about Kylie and the fun they have together. Graduation Day is upon them and Kylie and Max reach out to friends to help them get out of Mexico and home in time for the big day. From What I Remember is a "boy meets girl" story with lots of twists and turns and a bit of a "coming-of-age" storyline as well. Due to some of the story's events, the book is probably more appropriate reading for older teenage girls, who will undoubtedly recognize the characters, problems, and feelings, that make the novel such an easy read. Reviewer: Maria Lamattina, EdD.
VOYA - Ed Goldberg
Geeky Freiburg High valedictorian, Kylie, wakes up graduation morning in a strange room, a wedding ring on her finger, and lying next to cute senior, Max, while his girlfriend, Lily, glares at them from the doorway. Kylie has no memory of the previous twenty-four hours. Thus begins a narrative of the previous day's improbable and unbelievable events: Kylie's laptop getting stolen; she and Max (who previously barely acknowledged each other's existence) following the thief; getting trapped in a truck transporting stolen merchandise; crossing into Mexico without passports; meeting friends of her Ensenada-born father; and calling stateside friends to bring them their passports. Of course, during their Mexican adventure, Kylie and Max fall for each other. Kylie calls BFF Will, who comes to their rescue but meets Juan and falls instantly in love. Max calls Charlie, who is ambushed into taking Lily with him on the rescue operation, making an uncomfortable trip home. From What I Remember tries to have something for everyone (and fails): Kylie's brother has Asperger's Syndrome, Will is gay, Lily's father is indicted for stock fraud, Max's father has cancer. Better a "made-for-TV movie" than a book, the writing is fair, the plot is unbelievable, and the characters are stereotypes. At 461 pages, it is too long by half. Yet, with a tantalizing first chapter, the fact that each chapter starts with a movie quote and the story is told from various characters' perspectives, this book may appeal to teens. Great literature it is not, however. Reviewer: Ed Goldberg
VOYA - Rachelle David
From What I Remember is a humorous and light-hearted, quick and relaxing read. As characters reveal their lives, it is discovered that they have depth and insight. From the beginning, curiosity keeps the reader guessing what happened. Younger readers may find the novel hopeful, while older readers may anticipate the conclusion but appreciate the whimsy. Overlooking the obvious romance is required to enjoy the novel. Kylie's opportunity is what most high school girls wish for. Reviewer: Rachelle David, Teen Reviewer
Kirkus Reviews
What happens in Mexico stays in Mexico, unless it forces you to show up late to high-school graduation in a squad car wearing a red Mexican wedding dress. Just how did Kylie Flores, class valedictorian from the wrong side of the tracks, and Max Langston, the king of Freiburg Academy's richest and hottest, wind up in bed together in Ensenada, Mexico, on graduation morning? This breezy romp takes readers along for the ride as the teens piece together the details of their wild night. Kylie's best friend Will, her brother Jake and Max's girlfriend Lily also lend their voices to the story. Jake, who suffers from Asperger's, adds a particularly distinctive perspective. And while the number of teens coming out may push the believability factor, the depiction of their relationships with both friends and love interests feels real and positive. It's no surprise that both Kramer and Thomas share common roots in the film industry. Their love of the medium comes through not only in Kylie and Will's passion for quoting movies but also in the fast-paced action sequences that seem made for the big screen. Though some subplots feel superfluous, the twists and turns make for an enjoyable ride that readers will likely remember. (Fiction. 14 & up)

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Product Details

Disney Book Group
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File size:
3 MB
Age Range:
14 - 17 Years

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