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Just Another Hero (Jericho Trilogy #3)

Just Another Hero (Jericho Trilogy #3)

4.5 79
by Sharon M. Draper, Lemony Snicket (Narrated by)

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Suppose someone showed up in YOUR classroom carrying an AK-47. You have a split second: To think. To act. To be a hero.

But what is a hero?

That question becomes all too real for Arielle, November, Jericho, and their friends. They've been through so much: the hazing ritual that left Joshua dead and hearts aching; November finding out that she was pregnant


Suppose someone showed up in YOUR classroom carrying an AK-47. You have a split second: To think. To act. To be a hero.

But what is a hero?

That question becomes all too real for Arielle, November, Jericho, and their friends. They've been through so much: the hazing ritual that left Joshua dead and hearts aching; November finding out that she was pregnant with Josh's baby. But senior year is going well, and when the fire alarm goes off in English class, everyone assumes that crazy Jack is trying to get out of another quiz. But the alarm was pulled for a very different reason. A potentially deadly reason. There's only a matter of seconds to stop a tragedy, and all eyes are searching for someone -- anyone -- to step up and do something.

This shocking conclusion to the two-time Coretta Scott King Honor-winning trilogy by Sharon M. Draper will have you holding your breath to the very last page.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

More trials are in store for the Ohio teens featured in Battle of Jericho and November Blues in this final book in Draper's trilogy. This time the focus is on Arielle-whose mother has recently married a wealthy, controlling man who treats his stepdaughter and wife more like property than family-and Kofi, a promising student whose chance for success is threatened by his prescription drug addiction. While fighting deeply personal battles during their senior year, Arielle and Kofi are drawn into school dramas concerning the inexplicable disappearance of student property as well as recurring fire drills, a prank that eventually leads to a deadly situation. As in her previous novels, Draper shows mastery in building suspense and articulating adolescent emotions and reactions ("Kofi could feel Dana tense up, in the same way some people reacted to a snake-with great fear and the need to put distance between themselves and the reptile"). If the shocking climax, which culminates with a school shooting, appears a little contrived, powerful final events will leave readers pondering the definition of heroism. Ages 12-up. (June)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Children's Literature - Jennie DeGenaro
A group of high school seniors are close friends and hope to graduate together in the spring. Their personalities reflect their lifestyles. Each has unique problems that can be found among many students today. This page-turner keeps the reader anxious to learn more. The characters have issues to deal with as they try to succeed in school. The protagonist, Arielle, has problems at home that keep her on edge. Another girl, November, is caring for her handicapped baby. The baby's father was accidentally killed before they could be married. She is trying to make up the work she missed while on maternity leave. This is only a sample of the characters you will read about in this fascinating book. Things come to a head toward the end of the school year. The administration is concerned because students have had money and other items stolen from them. A student recommends a different method to catch the thief which they try. The situation is almost solved when a boy brings a gun to school and is threatening classmates. The police are called to handle both cases. Before anyone is hurt, students emerge as heroes and take the gun away from the boy. The reader and students are disappointed to learn who the thief is when the police take her away. This is a Coretta Scott King Honor book. The author, Sharon M. Draper, taught high school English for twenty-five years and the experience is reflected in her ability to capture the essence of teens while describing their triumphs and disappointments. Draper has written fourteen other exciting books for her following of avid readers. Reviewer: Jennie DeGenaro
VOYA - Marla Unruh
Studying in the hall early one morning, Arielle's thoughts are interrupted by loud voices near the boy's gym. Two boys are forcing a smaller boy to the swimming pool so they can strip him and throw him in while a third youth films for YouTube. When Arielle screams at them, they run away. Afterward Arielle sadly reflects that she was once one of the mean ones who teased and tormented others. Now she sits alone in the lunchroom. Arielle's former boyfriend, Jericho, is with Olivia, a girl once scorned by Arielle. When Arielle's new iPhone disappears from her book bag, she knows her controlling stepfather will use this fact to add to her misery. Is Eddie, just back from detention, behind the disappearance and other recent thefts? Or does Crazy Jack crave more attention? And why does someone keep pulling the school fire alarm? "I had forgotten how hard it is to be a kid," says Arielle's after-school boss. Draper has not forgotten, and in her deft hands, the real heroes are teens who prevail over problems that would overwhelm many adults. This third novel of The Jericho Trilogy can stand alone, even as it resolves the ongoing story lines of the aftermath of Josh's death, November's pregnancy, and Arielle's comeuppance. Likeable and courageous young characters find their way past painkillers, bullying, and disabilities. A caring, techno-savvy teacher who triumphs over a failed school system is one of several dynamic adult characters. The author presents a timeless theme in a well-crafted, highly readable story. Reviewer: Marla Unruh
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up–During their senior year at Douglass High, tightly knit friends confront both personal struggles and unsettling school situations. Arielle, Kofi, and the rest of their group mend fences after and come to grips with a lethal hazing event from the past. But there are more problems to tackle. Arielle accidentally witnesses a repugnant bullying incident that the victim asks her to keep secret and resolutely deals with her rich and controlling stepfather. Kofi worries about his irresponsible parents, securing college funding, his pain-pill addiction, and keeping his romance intact. New mother November returns to her classes, determined to finish school. Crazy Jack hides his mental instability by appearing funny and cool. Meanwhile, someone is stealing money and personal property at school. Alternating third-person chapters zero in on Arielle and Kofi while skillfully weaving their friends, classmates, teachers, and others into the plot. The discovery of the thief near the end is surprising and unsettling, and Jack’s breakdown, which involves an assault rifle and holding students hostage, immediately following is jarring. Though it is all a bit much, the quick pace, convincing dialogue, and interesting characters and situations will compel teens, especially those who have read TheBattle of Jericho (2003) and November Blues (2007, both S & S).–Diane P. Tuccillo, Poudre River Public Library District, Fort Collins, CO
Kirkus Reviews
Draper presents the conclusion to the trilogy that began with The Battle of Jericho (2003) and November Blues (2007), both Coretta Scott King Honor books. It is senior year, and Arielle and Kofi take center stage. Arielle is coping with issues at home and school. Her mother's new husband imposes rigid controls, and in addition, she has not always been a good friend to the girls in their circle so she worries about being accepted. Kofi, a brilliant science student, battles a secret addiction to prescription drugs as he frets about paying for college. A rash of burglaries at school casts suspicion on various individuals. But a crisis from an unlikely source explodes on the scene, and the school community works together to try to stop impending tragedy. The well-rounded characters are resilient African-American teens going through normal growing pains while navigating the realities of their communities. The texture and rhythm of contemporary life are woven throughout the narrative, enhancing its readability. Readers of urban fiction will enjoy this and receive a bit more in the bargain. (Fiction. 12 & up)

Product Details

Recorded Books, LLC
Publication date:
Jericho Trilogy Series , #3
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt


Chapter 1

Thursday, February 3

"Grab his arms!"

"Now pick up his legs!"

"Hey, quit! Stop! Leave me alone!"

"This is gonna be too funny!"

"Hurry up, before a teacher shows up."

"He's slippery like a little worm, man."

"Quit wigglin', little punk! You gonna make me throw you in the pool!"

"Let me GO!"

Arielle Gresham, who had come to school early to get some homework done, was sitting alone in a side hall near the boys' gym, lost in her own thoughts. Startled by the noise, she turned her head to see two big guys carrying a kicking, flailing smaller boy into the hall that led to the swimming pool.

"Put me down!"

"Make me!"

"PLEASE just leave me alone!"

"This is gonna be the best YouTube video ever!"

"Make sure you film just him and not our faces, dude."

"I'm not stupid!"

Arielle heard screeches of complaint, more laughter, then silence. By this time she was already on her feet and marching toward the locker room that led to the boys' entrance to the pool. She'd never actually been in a boys' locker room before, or any male bathroom for that matter, but she figured she could handle it.

The smell hit her first. How could a room that had to have been cleaned last night still reek so bad? The room was brightly lit with fluorescent bulbs that illuminated everything with a purplish glare. The row of urinals lined up against one pee-spattered wall helped explain the smell. Battered green lockers and benches lined the far wall.

She hurried out of there and down the hall to the pool. The voices, louder and clearer, made her break into a run.

"Throw his jeans into the pool!" A soft splash.

"He's wearin' tightie-whities, man!" Lots of deep laughter echoed.

"Throw those in too."

Arielle opened the door to the pool area. Damp, moist air, sharpened by the pungent tang of chlorine, hit her face.

The scene in front of her made her gasp. Two guys, students she'd seen around but did not know, were holding a squirming, crying student facedown on the tiled floor. He wore only a navy blue hoodie and his socks. His shoes lay a few feet away, but his jeans and underpants floated nearby in seven feet of water. A third boy was holding a cell phone, obviously filming the scene.

"What is wrong with you?" she screamed. Her voice echoed against the damp walls. "Let him go!"

"Busted!" the largest of the three said. "By a girl! Too cool!"

"No sweat. We got enough to post," the filmer crowed gleefully, flipping his cell phone shut. "Hey, Wardley! Your butt's gonna be famous!"

And with that, all three bigger guys hooted with laughter and ran out of the pool area.

The kid who'd been released lay there, his hands clasped over his head, trembling.

Arielle, unsure of what to do, knew he had to be mortified.

"Get out," the boy mumbled.

"Do you want me to try and fish your clothes out of the pool?" she offered.

"I said get out!" the boy said louder.

She was pretty sure she recognized that voice. "Osrick?" she asked.

Osrick Wardley was in her chemistry and English classes, but Arielle barely knew him. He was seventeen — a senior like the rest of them — but he was only about five feet tall and couldn't have weighed more than a hundred pounds. With dirty blond hair, a mouth full of braces, and a narrow, sunken chest, the kid was a magnet for guys who liked to act tough. Members of the football team sucker punched him and tossed him into wastebaskets with regularity. And now, it seemed, the swimmers were taking their turn.

Of course, everybody called him Weird Osrick. Who would name a kid Osrick? Arielle thought. His parents might as well have pinned a sign on him that said, please make fun of me!

Osrick had never scored anything lower than an A in any class Arielle had shared with him. Except for gym, which had to be rough for a guy who could be knocked over by a wildly tossed basketball.

"Osrick, are you okay?" Arielle asked. She touched her carefully curled hair, which was beginning to droop in the humid air.

"Please, promise you won't tell anybody!" Osrick pleaded. "Please!"

"Okay, okay! I promise." Arielle frowned, pondering whether that was the right thing to say. Surely she should tell a teacher?

"Now please just leave," Osrick begged.

"Suit yourself," Arielle said with a shrug. "I was just trying to help." She picked up a towel, tossed it toward him, then hurried out of the pool area, leaving Osrick to the privacy of his humiliation.

Copyright © 2009 by Sharon M. Draper

Meet the Author

Sharon M. Draper is a New York Times bestselling author and recipient of the Margaret A. Edwards Award honoring her significant and lasting contribution to writing for teens. She has received the Coretta Scott King Award for both Copper Sun and Forged by Fire. Her Out of My Mind has won multiple awards and has been a New York Times bestseller for well over three years. She lives in Cincinnati, Ohio, where she taught high school English for twenty-five years and was named National Teacher of the Year. Visit her at SharonDraper.com.

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Just Another Hero 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 77 reviews.
erin24 More than 1 year ago
This is one of my favorite books. I don't think I would be able to say anything bad about it. I really liked how it was told in different point of views from the different students. This book really captured what high school is like, there's always drama. While you're reading this book, it will keep you on your toes, you won't want to put it down. I for one, highly recommend this book to teens or anyone who likes this type of reading. I alo recommend the two other books in this series, they're great too. Please read this book, & I hope you like it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I would recommend this book to a friend because I personally thought that this book was amazing and unforgettable. I absolutely loved the characters like Dana Wolfe, November Nelson, Arielle Gresham, Olivia Thigpen and much more. The reason why I think this book was amazing and unforgettable is because in each chapter it has different characters and also those children's had different kind life's. Every single character had a problem and they had to solve them on their own they also needed help to solve them. Every single person in this book had a different life style. Another thing I liked about the book was that at the end it talked about how they all need to help each other to solve their problems. Its like a community because a community is when people help other people when they have a problem or need someone to talk to. In this book you relate your life to one of the characters life. Its very detailing and that's another thing that I loved about this book. This book was awesome and I hope that any one who reads this book thinks so too.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is so good! It is a must buy. I recommend any Sharon Draper book. She's such a good author! And the books are cheeeaapp!
Alteria More than 1 year ago
When I first started reading "Just Another Hero", I was excited to finish the trilogy and had enjoyed the other books, so I knew this was going to be good. It did start off REALLY slow, but  it was interesting getting to know the personalities of Arielle and Kofi. It was definitley suspensful, and kind of wierd because at the same time the hostage was taking place in the book, the tragedy of Sandy Hook Elementary had occured. Overall, I think it was a good book!  
Dan'tayia Marable More than 1 year ago
great book and suspenseful
laini brannan More than 1 year ago
this was the best book ever you wouldn't believe what you will read
5stars More than 1 year ago
Just Another Hero Review Does this book show the things a teenager could be going through in his or her life? Could the lack of attention be the cause of someone being violent? Are they just that desperate for attention? This book made me generate those questions. Sharon Draper's book Just Another Hero shows the lives of teenagers and there actions. The main characters in the story are Arielle, Kofi, and November. Draper takes you inside these teenagers lives and shows the trials and tribulations they go through. Arielle's mother has gone guy crazy after Arielle's father dies. Arielle's mother dates guys who are abusive, strict and rich. Kofi is hooked on pain killers that are for his broken arm. His girlfriend Dana has been trying to stop him from using the pills, but he keeps on using them anyway. November has to manage to go school and has take care of her child. November barely gets any sleep anymore because she has to wake up in the middle of the night to attend her child's needs. This book had an unpredictable twist and is very suspenseful. Everytime you thought you had a lead on something, it would change in an instant. The exciting twist will have you fooled. I believe that the books in the Jericho Trilogy could be easily turned into a movie or a T.V. series and could compete with hit shows like 24, Burn notice or NCIS. That is how much you will enjoy reading Just Another Hero. This book is best suited for the teenage reader, but can also be enjoyed by adults. I enjoyed this book and have come to expect nothing less than great work from Mrs. Sharon Draper.
bjneary More than 1 year ago
Draper's final book in the Battle for Jericho trilogy, Just Another Hero, was a great urban fiction. The plot was fast paced, the African American characters believable using as the backdrop---their final year of high school as seniors includes many fire drills, jobs after school and thoughts of getting into college. I just loved Draper's characterization of Arielle and her mother. They really grew from materialistic one dimensional characters to becoming thinking, feeling women. Kofi was an athlete, in love with Dana, but addicted to pain killers from surgery. He is able to beat his addiction, keep his promises to Dana, and win a scholarship to college. November is back at school, while her baby, Sunshine, is being cared for by friends. A few other memorable students include Osrick as the brainy wierdo that everyone makes fun of and Crazy Jack who clangs his cymbals in the hallway and may be pulling fire alarms to get out of taking tests. As the seniors move toward graduation, money and ipods are going missing, just Who is responsible? And what really makes a HERO? Draper's characters have grown, deepened, and work hard as they move toward their futures. Read all three Draper books and feel how these friends cope with the anguish and drama of everyday life. Great for the reluctant reader also!
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
JUST ANOTHER HERO is the final book in Sharon M. Draper's trilogy that began with THE BATTLE OF JERICHO and NOVEMBER BLUES. It takes readers inside a Cincinnati high school to follow the lives of a group of students who are now seniors finishing their high school careers and heading on to whatever their futures may hold. This group of friends has experienced a lot over the years. They have watched out for each other, fallen in love, and had disagreements that changed the course of their relationships. Now in their final year together, they are dealing with personal challenges, family issues, and the usual academic hassles of high school. Arielle, having realized the error of her ways, is making her way back into her old circle of friends. November is returning to school after the premature birth of her daughter, Sunshine. Kofi receives a letter of acceptance to MIT but now must worry about how to pay for the privilege of attending the prestigious school. Jericho and Olivia have a strong relationship and are the envy of everyone. Running alongside the stories of this group of friends are some potentially explosive situations. Osrick continues to be the target for practical jokes and harassment. Crazy Jack creates chaos in the halls and classrooms and is no doubt the reason for all the fake fire drills disrupting the school day. Eddie has returned from juvenile detention, causing more unwanted tension. And everyone is completely frustrated by a rash of thefts plaguing students and teachers alike. Author Sharon M. Draper is an expert at capturing the high school spirit and making her characters come alive. Her ability to create entertaining and believable high school scenarios makes her books popular with many teens.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Im so saddd i need this book i read all the other ones this the last one i needd it :-(
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I choose this book because this book is written by the same person that wrote the book out of my mind. Out of my mind is my favorite book so I thought I would give this one a go. The book was a little less than what I thought it was going to be. It was a very thrilling book but at the same time it would get boring at some parts. Just another hero is about a few friends that are in high school and they are in english class when they hear the fire alarm go off. They all think that it was crazy jack (one of their friends) pulled the fire alarm to get out of a test. But they were very wrong. Once all of the teenagers come back inside from waiting for the teachers to tell them that there wasn't a fire. Arielle, november and jerich come back inside they realize that the fire alarm was pulled not from crazy jack but from another student for a dangerous reason. Once the kids notice what has happened they realize they all need to be a hero to save themselves and the school. Read the book to find out what happens next. Over all I liked the book Sharon M Draper is a very detailed writer. I like her books because I always know what is going on but like I said earlier sometimes her books get into too much detail which makes it a little boring. I would recommend this book to any person above the age of 13. Get this book, it very interesting if you like very detailed stories.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was the story of a brat that had an attidude big as the skyscrapers of new york that tiened into the queen bee of sweet reality with a heart of gold. Osrick, kofi, dana , november, olivia, and jericho r the characterz that work together in times of horroe and heart break and this book is 4 anyone inbetween. Plzz read folks!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is so far good
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is great ill read it 2 times
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was about kids in high school its there last year of school. Last school year josh died and left November pregent with joshs kid.The senior class of this Ohio high school could use a hero. Arielle has had it with her stepfather, who is abusing her and her mom by keeping his money. Kofi has recoverd from his broken arm, but he still uses the pain meds to get through the day and his increasing stress about college and home life. November has returned after giving birth to her and Joshs pre-mature child Sunshine. Unfortunately, Eddie is back to after serving some time in juvenille detention. With the fire alarms being pulled on almost on weekly basis and personal stuff being stolen, everyone thinks Eddie is back with his old tricks. But things take a drastic turn when the final fire alarm sounds, and not everyone can leave the school. if you’re like me and haven’t read the first two books in Sharon Draper’s other books you will get an idea of what her other books are like wonce you read this book you will want to read her other books.I liked this book a lot.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is so good it makes u feel like your there
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
These flippin reviews/summaries suck!! They make the books sound amazing--which they probly r--but they give away stuff. Like, for example, now i know Josh dies and now i know November is pregnant with his baby. I didnt want to know that yet!!! (I havent read the books but i should.) Anyway, these books sound great. Ill think bout readin them