Hey 13!

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Hey 13!

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In 13 candid short stories, Soto (Accidental Love) exposes important, perspective-altering moments in the lives of contemporary 13-year-olds, many with Latino backgrounds, and the spiraling emotions that are synonymous with adolescence. In a moving tale, a boy whose family is leaving its dilapidated country neighborhood—“creaky and unpainted houses, trailers parked one against the other”—is torn when his father orders him to leave his dog behind. In one of the wittier entries, a girl describes the revolving careers of her father, a dreamer and schemer who has peddled tulip bulbs, sharpened knives, and imported watermelons. Several protagonists have eye-opening experiences, including an opinionated middle-school honor student touring a college that she finds to be shockingly liberal, a teen working in a soup kitchen who wants to see what it’s like on the other side of the counter, and a tough-talking girl who vows to stop using profanity after she hears a toddler repeating it. Credibly capturing teen parlance, Soto introduces a range of personalities, from insecure to egotistical, and scenarios that encompass the unsettling, the provocative, and the uplifting. Ages 10–14. (Oct.)
VOYA - Katie Mitchell
Hey 13! presents thirteen contemporary situational dramas and comedies. In "Campus Tour," Emma finds her conservative beliefs challenged on a tour that her honors-student group takes to a liberal arts college. She realizes how young she is and how much she has to learn as she ponders the things she has seen: girls holding hands, tai chi, a nude model, and political posters. In "Celebrities," Jasmine and Laura dress up and pretend to be Miley Cyrus and a celebutante named Alexis. They go to the mall and try out these personas on boys who claim to be named Kevin and Joe (like two of the Jonas Brothers) until Laura finds that she is tired of pretending to be someone she is not. With "It's Not Nice to Stare," Ashlee is disturbed by the ogling she gets from older men, all the while trying to make sure she still looks perfect. She is chagrined when she berates a man for staring and realizes too late that he is blind. The cover art of Hey 13! is fashioned after teen magazines such as J14, with photographs of young teens, one-line teasers, and the tagline "13 Stories By Supercool Writing Celeb Gary Soto." The target audience is clear. What is less understandable is why young teens would choose to read this book. The pop culture references are already dated (including the joke about Amy Winehouse possibly ending up in jail), the characters seem one-dimensional, and morals are delivered with a heavy hand. This is a book that will appeal to a very niche population and will most likely have to be hand-sold to those readers. Reviewer: Katie Mitchell
ALAN Review - Melanie Hundley
Hey, 13! is a collection of short stories about the pains and joys of being thirteen. The adolescents in Soto's story collection experience the multiple ways in which their expectations do not match their actual experiences. In The Campus Tour, a young girl visits a college campus expecting to see students studying, professors in tweed jackets, and people carrying on academic discussions about literature or science. What she experiences is completely different. In It's Not Nice to Stare, a young girl struggles with staring and self-image. In A Simple Plan, a boy is forced to abandon the family's dog. Soto's stories capture the naivete and uncertainty that comes with wanting desperately to be older. These stories focus on issues of choice, perception, family, self-image, and honor. Like Howe's 13: Thirteen Stories That Capture the Agony and Ecstasy of Being Thirteen, this collection shows what it is like to grow up. Reviewer: Melanie Hundley
School Library Journal
Gr 5–8—Soto introduces readers to the experiences of 13 kids, all of whom are 13. One story stars a girl anxious to grow up until she has an uncomfortable interaction at the local mall. Another selection features a girl who is so confident about her newfound womanhood that she allows her ego to inflate, escalating in an awkward confrontation with a blind man. Many of these tales will make readers cringe because the embarrassment for the teens bleeds through the pages, a testament to Soto's writing. Boys and girls are equally represented. All of the entries are unique and could be classified as tween urban lit. The stories are not light but kids will be able to relate to the characters, which will make the book appealing even to more reluctant readers.—Elizabeth Swistock, Jefferson Madison Regional Library, Charlottesville, VA
Kirkus Reviews

Soto's latest short-story collection offers readers glimpses into the daily lives of young teens.

An inexperienced middle-school honor student's eye-opening visit to a liberal-arts college starts the collection, and a far less naïve young girl has an equally revealing visit to a friend's house in the 13th and final tale. In between, subjects range from the superficial to the profound, mimicking the life of the average 13-year-old. In "Twin Stars," best friends Teri and Luz dream of pop stardom, while Saul Garcia faces a crisis of conscience when he abandons his faithful dog in "A Simple Plan." Cynthia Rodriguez struggles with the issues of poverty and charity after serving a classmate at a local soup kitchen in "Finding Religion." Also realistically, not all of the tales feature epiphanies. Sometimes the bullies do win, and occasionally self-absorbed teenaged girls stay that way. While the collection offers a mixture of male (four) and female (nine) protagonists who are often explicitly Latino, the cover of the book features pictures of primarily young Latinas and resembles the type of teen fan magazine marketed exclusively at girls. This stylistic decision is unfortunate, as there are some gems for both genders in the collection.

If young males can get past the cover, this collection is good for all reluctant readers.(Short stories. 10-13)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780823423958
  • Publisher: Holiday House, Inc.
  • Publication date: 9/16/2011
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 807,758
  • Age range: 11 - 14 Years
  • Lexile: 760L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 28 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(23)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(2)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 28 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 16, 2014

    SoulClan

    Main camp

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

    Posted January 1, 2014

    I am 13

    Hahaha yay

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

    Posted June 21, 2013

    Strange reviews...

    All i wanted was to see what people thought of this book. Then i read some and see stuff like "nook sex". WHAT? This is a reading sight. And there were no reviews on the book. Hmmm...

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

    Posted February 26, 2013

    Nook sex is....

    When you talk sexual and make sex sounds

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted February 24, 2013

    I NEED HELP

    WHAT IS NOOK SEX

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2012

    Damien

    He walks in looking around. In a tight shirt.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 8, 2013

    Danny

    Hey

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 5, 2012

    To below

    Hey ;). *A pretty chick walks in* Give me a ride. *suddenly she turns into a demon* PERV!!! *Claws you to shreds* what is with teens these days?!

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted December 7, 2012

    Jack

    *he kisses her neck*

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 24, 2012

    To : Need a sexy girl

    Im a sexy chick! my magic awaits you at blue result two. + im 16 <3

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted November 24, 2012

    Yup

    I sure am

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 24, 2012

    Guys

    Nooksex with a sexy girl ~alyssa

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted December 10, 2012

    Bubbles

    Jack?

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted November 24, 2012

    oh sorry.

    too awkward? :/ ~ rimmygee

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 25, 2012

    Kobe

    Gtgtb

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2012

    Fudge

    Lol i was jk i no what you were trying to say

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2012

    Kara

    Hey. Its Tori.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2012

    Girl

    .

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted December 11, 2012

    Hi

    Hi

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2012

    Mel

    Hey

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 28 Customer Reviews

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