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Panic
     

Panic

4.1 21
by Sharon M. Draper
 

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This gripping, chillingly realistic novel from New York Times bestselling author Sharon Draper, “by turns pulse-pounding and inspiring” (Kirkus Reviews), shows that all it takes is one bad decision for a dream to become a nightmare.

Diamond knows not to get into a car with a stranger.

But what if the stranger is well-dressed

Overview

This gripping, chillingly realistic novel from New York Times bestselling author Sharon Draper, “by turns pulse-pounding and inspiring” (Kirkus Reviews), shows that all it takes is one bad decision for a dream to become a nightmare.

Diamond knows not to get into a car with a stranger.

But what if the stranger is well-dressed and handsome? On his way to meet his wife and daughter? And casting a movie that very night—a movie in need of a star dancer? What then?

Then Diamond might make the wrong decision.

It’s a nightmare come true: Diamond Landers has been kidnapped. She was at the mall with a friend, alone for only a few brief minutes—and now she’s being held captive, forced to endure horrors beyond what she ever could have dreamed, while her family and friends experience their own torments and wait desperately for any bit of news.

From New York Times bestselling author Sharon Draper, this is a riveting exploration of power: how quickly we can lose it—and how we can take it back.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Tina Chan
Sixteen-year-old Diamond Landers goes missing after she willingly leaves the mall with a handsome, well dressed stranger named Thane, who strikes a conversation with her. Diamond is a dance student, and Thane says he is an assistant film director looking to cast the role of a dancer. He convinces her to go home with him to meet his teenage daughter and some celebrities. Intrigued, she goes with him. She soon discovers she is the victim of sadomasochist behavior with men that is shown online. Worried, Diamond’s family and friends try to find her with the help of the police. Meanwhile, her best friend Mercedes blames herself for staying in the store to buy a pair of tights while Diamond went to the food court, where she met Thane. Their friend Layla has a love-hate relationship with her boyfriend, Donovan, who physically and mentally abuses her, while Justin has a crush on her. An exciting and educational read for teens, this story helps readers think twice about their actions and consequences. The author includes website resources about teen dating abuse and child predators. Reviewer: Tina Chan; Ages 14 up.
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—Draper has created a nurturing setting for her characters in the Crystal Pointe Dance Academy where students have been dancing and working together for years. Miss Ginger, their instructor, provides support and challenge in endeavors like the spring showcase or the upcoming production of Peter Pan. Diamond, 15, is swept off her feet by a stranger's promise of an audition for a movie when he finds her alone at the mall. Her BFF, Mercedes, gets a cryptic text before they are to meet at the food court to go to the academy for a performance. Through drugs and restraints, villainous Thane and his henchmen cameramen, as well as other paying participants, abuse Diamond as the unwilling star in Internet pornography for days. Meanwhile, with only intermittent plot coverage of Diamond's ordeal, the dance academy and school hold vigils and worry about their classmate. Most chapters actually deal with Layla: she doesn't acknowledge fellow dancer Justin's crush because she is more concerned about boyfriend, Donny, who gets dangerous and abuses her when he feels jealous or insecure. Layla suffers from some bad judgment, a mostly absentee mother, and the challenge of her father being released after six years in prison. This realistic novel takes on too many characters and plotlines, and the scattershot approach may leave readers less engaged and invested. Dance enthusiasts should enjoy the depictions of costumes, jitters, daunting roles, and therapeutic workouts. However, multiple issues-bullying, kidnapping, sexual enslavement by a predator-pedophile, abusive teen relationships, and sexting-result in hot-button overload.—Suzanne Gordon, Lanier High School, Sugar Hill, GA
Publishers Weekly
A tumultuous week in the lives of students at the Crystal Pointe Dance Academy is told through a variety of viewpoints. Justin, the academy's principal male dancer, must continually defend himself against homophobic taunts while he pines for Layla, whose low self-esteem keeps her locked in an abusive relationship. Zizi is an airhead, and Mercedes lives under the thumb of her oppressively rigid mother. Then there is Diamond, who goes to the mall for dance tights and leaves with a handsome older man who has promised her a film audition. As readers will likely predict, the film Thane is making will not be rated G. Diamond is drugged, tied to a bed, and raped repeatedly in the presence of some burly cameramen, who post the film online and rake in money. Diamond's chapters are brutal but, perhaps mercifully, they are few and far between; the story sidetracks frequently to other characters' less urgent dramas. Draper writes about the lives of teenagers with authority and believable dialogue, but the juxtaposition of banal moments with Diamond's nightmare makes the sexual violence feel uncomfortably trivialized. Ages 14–up. (Apr.)
Richie's Picks http://richiespicks.com - Richie Partington
"Sharon M. Draper's PANIC is an outstanding book... [This is] high-interest contemporary fiction -- a book that many readers will gulp down in one evening. It is a story that addresses important issues (like never getting into cars with strangers, and never letting your high school boyfriend take photos of you that you wouldn't want your parents to see). Thus, it is a book that could quite likely save lives and reputations. Some astute readers will recognize how these issues all relate to the objectification of women in our culture. And it is for these reasons that PANIC will be an important addition to middle school and high school collections. With a little luck, there will be lots of young adolescents who read it and learn the consequences of risky behaviors -- without having to learn them the hard way."
From the Publisher
"A troupe of high school dance students is rocked when one of their number disappears.

The Crystal Pointe Dance Academy is a refuge for the group of students who take classes and participate in dance recitals. Each of them—Diamond, Layla, Mercedes and Justin, the only boy in the group—has a different reason to dance, but they all want to earn a role in the upcoming production of Peter Pan. When Diamond disappears during a routine trip to the mall, the close-knit group is thrown into emotional turmoil that mounts as the days go by. As it turns out, Diamond has been lured by a sexual predator dangling the promise of a movie audition and finds herself in a dire situation. While the four main characters alternate narration, this is really a two-sided story: Diamond’s story of abduction and exploitation, and the everyday concerns her friends face back home. The other dancers face tough situations, from relationship conflicts to a parent returning home after a long incarceration. Diamond’s story, though, with elements of suspense and sexual horror, is the more interesting of the two, and readers will find themselves impatient to get back to her ordeal, which is depicted frankly but with sensitivity. Threading through it all is the importance of the arts as a vehicle to get through tough times.

By turns pulse-pounding and inspiring."

"Sharon M. Draper's PANIC is an outstanding book... [This is] high-interest contemporary fiction — a book that many readers will gulp down in one evening. It is a story that addresses important issues (like never getting into cars with strangers, and never letting your high school boyfriend take photos of you that you wouldn't want your parents to see). Thus, it is a book that could quite likely save lives and reputations. Some astute readers will recognize how these issues all relate to the objectification of women in our culture. And it is for these reasons that PANIC will be an important addition to middle school and high school collections. With a little luck, there will be lots of young adolescents who read it and learn the consequences of risky behaviors — without having to learn them the hard way."

* "Balances a suspenseful plot and the emotional growth of her characters with ease and grace."

starred review Shelf Awareness
* "Balances a suspenseful plot and the emotional growth of her characters with ease and grace."
Kirkus Reviews
A troupe of high school dance students is rocked when one of their number disappears. The Crystal Pointe Dance Academy is a refuge for the group of students who take classes and participate in dance recitals. Each of them--Diamond, Layla, Mercedes and Justin, the only boy in the group--has a different reason to dance, but they all want to earn a role in the upcoming production of Peter Pan. When Diamond disappears during a routine trip to the mall, the close-knit group is thrown into emotional turmoil that mounts as the days go by. As it turns out, Diamond has been lured by a sexual predator dangling the promise of a movie audition and finds herself in a dire situation. While the four main characters alternate narration, this is really a two-sided story: Diamond's story of abduction and exploitation, and the everyday concerns her friends face back home. The other dancers face tough situations, from relationship conflicts to a parent returning home after a long incarceration. Diamond's story, though, with elements of suspense and sexual horror, is the more interesting of the two, and readers will find themselves impatient to get back to her ordeal, which is depicted frankly but with sensitivity. Threading through it all is the importance of the arts as a vehicle to get through tough times. By turns pulse-pounding and inspiring. (Fiction. 14 & up)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781442408982
Publisher:
Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Publication date:
03/12/2013
Sold by:
SIMON & SCHUSTER
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
272
Sales rank:
156,544
Lexile:
HL610L (what's this?)
File size:
2 MB
Age Range:
14 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

1

JUSTIN, Friday, April 12 4 p.m.

“ ‘Proud and insolent youth,’ said Hook, ‘prepare to meet thy doom.’

“ ‘Dark and sinister man,’ Peter answered, ‘have at thee.’ ”

—from Peter Pan

“Hey, dance boy!”

Sixteen-year-old Justin Braddock, wearing his favorite Timberland boots, tromped down the rain-slicked sidewalk, book bag slung over his left shoulder, heading to the bus stop. He did not turn around—he knew who trailed behind him.

“You heard me, dancing queen! Don’t be tiptoeing away, now.”

Justin sighed. Another fight.

Zac Patterson, the wrestling team’s “sultan of the slam,” was known to brandish both his biceps and equally massive ego. He yelled louder. “What up, fag!”

“Swish!” added Ben Bones. Justin knew Bones would be hovering just a few steps behind Zac, safe like a shadow.

Justin tried to ignore the idiots behind him. Guys had been teasing him for years, ever since he started taking dance lessons. He was as tall as Zac, more muscled than Bones. But most guys seemed clueless about the athletic skills required for the leaps and lifts he had mastered. And none of them knew how much he loved it.

“Look how he twitches those hips!” Zac jeered.

Justin wondered, amused, why Zac was so interested in his butt.

“Got your shiny pink toe shoes stuffed in that bag? Who braids your hair—yo mama?” Bones asked, laughing loudly with Zac.

“Your mama wears a tutu too!” Zac and Bones hooted with laughter.

Justin stopped walking. He tossed his backpack on the ground and spun around. “Don’t you talk about my mother!” he hissed. A surge of rage and sorrow coursed through him. His mother had died less than a year before, and it felt like yesterday. It felt like forever.

“Your mama so stupid, she tried to put her M&M’s in alphabetical order!” Bones sniped, still standing safely behind Zac.

Justin was not in a mood to play the dozens. Not today. Not ever. Not about his mom.

“Your mama twice the man you are,” Zac sneered.

Nope.

Not today.

Justin did not hesitate. He wheeled around, tightened his right fist, then, with a whump, he planted a direct blow to the center of Zac’s gut.

Zac, all two hundred pounds of him, crumpled in a heap on the sidewalk. “Oomph,” he managed to mumble.

Bones, looking terrified, placed both his hands in a strategic position to protect himself, but Justin just glared at him.

“Dance with that!” Justin said as he picked up his pack. He continued down the street and did not look back.

What People are Saying About This

Richie's Picks http://richiespicks.com - Richie Partington
"Sharon M. Draper's PANIC is an outstanding book... [This is] high-interest contemporary fiction — a book that many readers will gulp down in one evening. It is a story that addresses important issues (like never getting into cars with strangers, and never letting your high school boyfriend take photos of you that you wouldn't want your parents to see). Thus, it is a book that could quite likely save lives and reputations. Some astute readers will recognize how these issues all relate to the objectification of women in our culture. And it is for these reasons that PANIC will be an important addition to middle school and high school collections. With a little luck, there will be lots of young adolescents who read it and learn the consequences of risky behaviors — without having to learn them the hard way.

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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Panic 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 21 reviews.
BlkosinerBookBlog More than 1 year ago
    Panic is a pretty intense book that shows the power of friendship, and the arts. It tackles quite a few tough issues, kidnapping, abusive relationships, and what happens when you take things a bit too far and then the consequences. It wasn't what I expected from the summary, but I ended up liking it anyways.      I appreciated the multiple points of view, showing how Diamond being missing effects her friends, as well as Layla being in the destructive relationship hurts more than just her. I liked the message of hope, and healing, as well as the sense of community with the dancers that Panic gave me.      It was tough being in Diamond's head, but I admired the clear head that she kept about her. Even though she was going through really tough stuff, and didn't know where she was, and she knew awful things were happening to her, she still thought about taking care of herself even when she didn't want to because she wanted to be able to find that right moment to get herself out.      Being in Mercedes head was hard, because she was with Diamond when she disappeared. They had seperated for about half and hour, and then she gets a text from her friend, and then no one hears from her, and she is declared missing. She carries around understandable guilt, that I think that anyone would feel. But I love the support she gets, and that she is told not to blame herself.      Also, Justin. Oh my. I loved how he stood up for Layla, and I could totally see what he saw in her. I relate with Layla though with her self esteem issues too by the way. But I love that he is bold but shy all at the same time. And I adore male dancers. I like that he meshed his ballet with the hip hop, that was a real treat. And I appreciate how he saw through the scandal with Layla and didn't turn his back on her. It was also admirable how he stayed true to liking her even through her being with Donovan, and making some not so smart choices.      One thing that distracted me through it all is the slang. It has been a while that I have read a book where it was distracting to me, even in the dystopias where there are sometimes new words and terms thrown at me. Maybe it is because I am not a teen and I am a stay at home mom, but that is my take.       I also wished that the book was longer, and gave more of a resolution than just hinting at the hope and healing that we get a glimpse of from the characters. But I have started preferring wrapped up to open ended in my contemporary, so personal preference I suppose.       Ms. Draper handled all of the tough issues with grace, and I like how she had the parents, siblings, and their dance teacher involved in their life, giving support, and how dance was always an outlet for the girls and Justin.  Bottom Line: Emotional and fast paced.
Anonymous 10 days ago
I real like our book ut is realy touching i hope you make another book just like thus one. It is good i almost cryed
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Dudes this thriller jusst outdid micheal jackson!! Diamond was a strong character wich i loved and mercades was a sassy but realtable girl. I recemmend this to u and u and yes u cuz anyone will fall in love!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
All of our lives we have been told to never talk to strangers, but just once couldn't hurt, right? Wrong! Just as dance rehearsals for a major show start, the group gets distracted and unfocused when one of their dance team members goes missing. In the book Panic by Sharon M. Draper, it was just another normal day at Crystal Point Dance Academy, or so they thought, when Diamond Landers suddenly disappears. Diamond knows talking to strangers is bad, but when one offers her something that intrigues her she just cannot help herself from taking the offer from the stranger. After Diamond disappears she goes through terrible things that are out of her control. As I read this book I was amazed at how the detail of the book created a clearer picture for the reader, but it also made the book more interesting to read. I would not recommend this book for kids, because I think that the author wrote this book for an audience of teenagers and young adults. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book mainly because it is one of those books that just grab your attention until you are finished reading it. I would recommend this book to my friends or anyone interested, because it was enjoyable.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I liked panic, even though it has some... sad? parts. I am a little young to read this though.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is so good it gets so intresting soon as you turn your page.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I believe “Panic” by, Haron M. Draper, is a wonderful book. It has a great mystery to it, and had me on the edge of my seat wondering what’s going to happen next. This book takes place in a small town, high school, and local mall. The main characters are Diamond, Mercedes, Laya, Ziz, Justin, And Thane English. In this book one of the main characters, gets kidnap and drugged. All her friends and families got worried when she didn’t make it to one of her performance. No one knew where she was only thing was a text she sent to one of friends. Some people thought she just missed her performance, others thought something bad has happen. During the school performance everyone is trying to figure out what has happen. And help the police find her. To know all that happened next. You should really read this book. I’m not really into books but I really enjoyed seating down. Trying to figure out what all is happening and what will happen next. You should really enjoy it yourself
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was ab amzingggggg book. The only reason i read it because the main chracter has my name. But it relly is a great book and it teaches you about life.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book followed several different characters from a dance studio. Each chapter was played out so it was following a certain character. It addressed several different issues, like being in an abusive relationship. One thing I did not like about the book was the way the characters talked. I have never meet anyone who actually talks like that and don't think I ever will. Overall, it was a pretty short and easy read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
please turn this into a series
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book sounds sad because of the summary but this is a lesson for me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The plot line is pretty interesting, but that's all it has. This book completely lacks in detail and true substance. I read it all in 2 days. Just go to the store and read it for free if you're really curious; not worth the buy - I regret it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jenna your done roleplaying.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
She has such great potential love her
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jenna lets talk
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I haven't read the book but the synopsis looks really good. I have read the Hazelwood High Trilogy and i love her books.