The Tension of Opposites

The Tension of Opposites

4.2 15
by Kristina McBride
     
 

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"Tense! The constant push and pull of friendship, pain, love, and jealousy is beautifully drawn. A definite must read."—Jay Asher, New York Times best-selling author of Thirteen Reasons Why

"[A] well-paced story with . . . emotional punches that really connect."—Publishers Weekly

"Told without explicit detail, the

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Overview

"Tense! The constant push and pull of friendship, pain, love, and jealousy is beautifully drawn. A definite must read."—Jay Asher, New York Times best-selling author of Thirteen Reasons Why

"[A] well-paced story with . . . emotional punches that really connect."—Publishers Weekly

"Told without explicit detail, the headline drama about sexual predators will pull teens in."—Booklist

"There aren't many explorations of what happens after such a crime . . . and readers will . . . sympathize with both Tess and Noelle."—BCCB

When Tessa's best friend Noelle disappears right before the start of eighth grade, Tessa's life changes completely--she shies away from her other friends and stops eating in the cafeteria. Now, two years later, Noelle has escaped her captivity and is coming home, in one piece but not exactly intact, and definitely different. Tessa's life is about to change again as she tries to revive the best-friendship the two girls had shared before Noelle--now Elle--was kidnapped; puts up a futile resistance to the charming new guy at school; pursues her passion for photography while trying to build the bravado to show her photos to the public; and tries to balance her desire to protect and shelter Elle with the necessity to live her own life and put herself first.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Two years after the abduction of her best friend Noelle, sophomore Tessa has changed her entire life, isolating herself from friends and avoiding dating. So when Noelle miraculously returns, having found a way to have her kidnapper arrested, Tessa hopes to pick up where they left off and do all she can to ease Noelle’s return to their hometown. But Noelle now goes by Elle, and she doesn’t want Tessa’s help. Meanwhile, Max, a boy in Tessa’s photography class who she can’t help falling for, can’t stand to see Tessa keep putting Elle ahead of herself. Tessa’s pain is realistically drawn, and her recovery—which still pales with what Elle has to deal with—is authentic and hard-won; debut author McBride effectively uses Tessa’s love of photography as an expression of her growth. Tessa’s concern for what she sees as poor choices on Elle’s part (such as throwing herself into a relationship with an obnoxious football player), as well as her questions about Elle’s captivity create true tension in a well-paced story with some emotional punches that really connect. Ages 14–up. (May)
School Library Journal
Gr 6–10—Aspiring photographer Tessa McMullen's world was turned upside down two years ago when her best friend was abducted. Noelle has now escaped and been reunited with her family, but is much changed. She insists on being called Elle and is sullen, uncommunicative, and not at all interested in reestablishing the friendship. Tessa, meanwhile, put her life on hold during Noelle's absence and feels guilty about her growing attraction to fellow photographer Max. Eventually Tessa breaks through her friend's reserve, but Noelle/Elle continues to act in self-destructive ways. The first half of this novel is emotionally compelling and psychologically insightful, as readers get glimpses of both the nature of the accommodations Elle has had to endure in order to survive, and of the way in which Tessa is beginning to forge a more realistic view of the friend she formerly idealized. Unfortunately, the second half shifts into a kind of "Mean Girls" mode, as Elle's play for the big man on campus and resulting confrontation with his queen-bee girlfriend take center stage, and the ending is confusing. Ultimately, readers gain no real understanding of the effect of Elle's ordeal on who she is or may become.—Richard Luzer, Fair Haven Union High School, VT

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781606842133
Publisher:
Lerner Publishing Group
Publication date:
05/24/2011
Pages:
288
Sales rank:
898,398
Product dimensions:
5.36(w) x 7.98(h) x 0.82(d)
Lexile:
HL730L (what's this?)
Age Range:
14 - 17 Years

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