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4.5 2
by Sara Cassidy

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Thirteen-year-old Liza gets involved in activism and takes on the oil industry.


Thirteen-year-old Liza gets involved in activism and takes on the oil industry.

Editorial Reviews

Washington State Young Adult Review Group
"Reluctant readers will like this fast-paced read."
CM Magazine
"[Orca] couldn't have picked a better time to publish Slick…A well-written, fast-paced, high interest novel with compelling characters written for reluctant readers…Liza is an appealing, interesting and realistic character. The book also encourages girls and tweens in general to become interested in political issues and current events…Highly Recommended."
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"This novel would work well with an environmental science component. Largely idealistic, Liza shows that one person can make a difference in both their community and in the wider world…A subject area that is certain to be of interest and appeal to those with an environmental aptitude; especially of interest with the recent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico."
"Slender, easy-to-read, and strongly purposeful...This upbeat tale...[is a] solid entry in the Orca Currents series."
The Horn Book Guide
"Liza's determination and activism set a powerful example...The topic is relevant and will engage young socially aware readers."
Children's Literature - Lauri Berkenkamp
Liza is just getting used to the fact that her mother and father have split up, when her mother starts dating a new man whom Liza hates. She is determined to prove that Robert, whom Liza calls "Slick," is no good. When she discovers that he works for an oil company that has been abusing native rights in Guatemala, Liza gets her friends together to form an environmental activist group to expose the company's actions, and make her mother see that Slick isn't the right guy for their family. Through the course of the novel, Liza learns how powerful a group of committed teens can be. She also slowly realizes that perhaps Slick isn't as bad as he seems. While the novel's message of empowerment and community activism is a good one to promote to young readers, this novel does it with a sledgehammer, and presents very unrealistic outcomes. At the end of the novel, Liza's small group of activist friends has not only beaten the multi-national oil company and helped the Guatemalans, but she also has been recruited to lead several other major environmental campaigns. Young readers who are ardent environmentalists will certainly enjoy reading about Liza's success, but the crux of the novel is Liza's relationship with Slick, and the conflict between them is introduced and then immediately overshadowed by the environmental messages. It makes the novel more preachy than fun to read. Recommended for middle school readers interested in the environment and activism. Reviewer: Lauri Berkenkamp
School Library Journal
Gr 5–8—Liza is unhappy that her recently divorced mom has developed a new serious relationship. The teen can't understand what her environmentally conscious mother could possibly see in oil-executive Robert, and she determines to undermine their growing relationship. She puts together a girls' group called GRRR! (Girls for Renewable Resources, Really!) to expose Argenta Oil's dirty underside and pressure the company to fulfill its responsibilities, and as the group succeeds in making some changes, Liza's activism helps her to realize what is important to her, both personally and politically. With its short length and high-interest, action-packed nature, this empowering book will be a favorite with younger teens.—Susan Riley, Mount Kisco Public Library, NY

Product Details

Orca Book Publishers
Publication date:
Orca Currents Series
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
4.20(w) x 6.80(h) x 0.30(d)
HL620L (what's this?)
Age Range:
10 - 14 Years

Read an Excerpt

"Hi, Laura! Hi, kids!" he says, overfriendly and not waiting for an answer. I don't even want to say his name. I hate him. I totally, absolutely, completely, really, truly hate him.

Meet the Author

Sara Cassidy has worked as a youth hostel manager, a newspaper reporter, and a tree planter in five Canadian provinces. Her poetry, fiction and articles have been widely published, and she has won a Gold National Magazine Award. She lives in Victoria, British Columbia, with her three children. For more information, visit www.saracassidywriter.com. Follow her on Twitter @SaraCassidyWrit.

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Slick 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Viper and cleaver bio comming soon
Heidi_G More than 1 year ago
Liza does not like her mom's boyfriend. When she discovers that he works for an oil company accused of environmental harm, she vows to expose the company and make it pay for the damage. Her efforts to form a new club at school, Girls for Renewable Resources, Really (GRRR), is comical but Liza is determined to not only get rid of the man in her mom's life but also to really help the people in Guatamala who have been so horrifically affected by the large oil company's actions. A great hi-lo read for teens interested in environmental issues.