Venola in Love

Venola in Love

5.0 1
by Cheryl Ware, Kristin Sorra
     
 

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
"I promise to carry you with me in my backpack at all times and to protect you from prying eyes as I capture the most exciting and heart-wrenching moments of the second half of my seventh-grade year," writes Ware's (Sea Monkey Summer) plucky title character in her new diary. In its pages, Venola confides--candidly, comically and often melodramatically--goings-on at school and at home, where she is the youngest of six children, with a new baby on the way. Once her family acquires a computer, Venola also bares her soul in e-mail messages to her best friend, Sally, and occasionally to her brother's big-hearted girlfriend, Gwen (who happens to be the sister of Nathan, a new boy in Venola's class, and the ultimately unrequited love interest alluded to in the novel's title). Readers will grin easily at many of the preteen's observations, among them her description of square dancing during gym class, when "The boys approach us like it's some kind of primal battlefield, and pass us back and forth with such velocity that some girls come near to passing out, but others of us have learned to stomp toes with the best of the guys." Sorra creates humorous doodles on Venola's diary pages, and the heroine's ingenuous voice moves this tale along at a perky pace. Ages 8-12. (Oct.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature
Venola has a crush on Nathan, the new boy in seventh grade. Her ups and downs are disclosed exclusively through her diary entries, e-mails and a few desperate letters to the editor of Young and Stylish. Is Nathan really worth all her worrying and scheming, or did Venola just want "to be IN love, and that was more important than the WHO?" Readers will have the answer to this question long before Venola does. In addition, Venola must contend with a new baby in the house, friends who shoplift and a generous handful of life's embarrassing moments. Although her varied correspondence gives this novel an inviting slant, some of the dialogue and description is so detailed that it reads more like traditional narrative than realistic diary entries. Similarly, Venola's voice is not always entirely credible. Readers will enjoy her passion, however, as well as her spirited and humorous attempts to manage the daily tribulations of seventh grade. 2000, Orchard, $16.99 and $15.95. Ages 8 to 12. Reviewer: Betty Hicks
School Library Journal
Gr 4-7-A story told through a combination of diary entries, class notes, and e-mail. Seventh-grader Venola Mae Cutright is almost ready to fall in love. It seems as if all the other girls in her class have already found boyfriends and she just doesn't see anyone she might like. Then handsome Nathan Racine moves to Bellington, WV. Venola is a typically spunky protagonist who discovers, through routine adventures, that being true to herself is more important than fitting in with other girls. The message is fairly heavy at the end, but Venola's voice remains true to her fun and witty character throughout. Most of the plot elements concern tired devices such as peers shoplifting, embarrassing moments, and finding out that people are more perfect from a distance. Despite these typical situations and the pat resolutions, the novel is lighthearted and humorous. Preteens, including reluctant readers, will enjoy the amusing illustrations and the quick-paced structure.-Amy Stultz, Leesburg Public Library, FL Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
PLB: 0-531-33306-X In this sequel to Catty-Cornered (1998), Venola is now in the second half of seventh grade and has become quite boy-crazy. Although she's never had a boyfriend, she has purchased a journal with the hope that something exciting will happen so that she might write about it. Well, lo and behold, a new hunky guy, Nathan, enters her school and thus becomes the primary topic of Venola's journal entries. The most interesting aspect of this book is the format; the story unfolds through e-mails, journal entries and class notes, which the reader experiences entirely from Venola's point of view. No responses are ever seen. There are a few diversions from Venola's obsession with Nathan and her efforts to capture him: she discovers two of her friends are shoplifting and that her parents are going to have yet another baby (they already have 6 children!). By the end, Nathan reveals himself to be rather dull and to have a smoking habit. Venola thinks she might have a crush on someone else. The story closes with worthy food for thought:"Could it be that I just wanted to be IN LOVE, and that was more important than the WHO?" Overall, in spite of the interesting format, Venola's story is insipid and uninspiring. (line drawings) (Fiction. 8-12)

From the Publisher

In this sequel to Catty-Cornered (1998), Venola is now in the second half of the seventh grade and has become quite boy-crazy. Although she's never had a boyfriend, she has purchased a journal with the hope that something exciting will happen so that she might write about it. Well, lo and behold, a new hunky guy, Nathan, enters her school and thus becomes the primary topic of Venola's journal entries. The most interesting aspect of this book is the format; the story unfolds through e-mails, journal entries and class notes, which the reader experiences entirely from Venola's point of view. No responses are ever seen. There are a few diversions from Venola's obsession with Nathan and her efforts to capture him: she discovers two of her friends are shoplifting and that her parents are going to have yet another baby (they already have 6 children!). By the end, Nathan reveals himself to be rather dull and to have a smoking habit. Venola thinks she might have a crush on someone else. The story closes with worthy food for thought: "Could it be that I just wanted to be IN LOVE, and that was more important than the WHO?" Overall, in spite of the interesting format, Venola's story is insipid and uninspiring (line drawings)
--Kirkus Reviews, October 15, 2000

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780531333068
Publisher:
Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
09/28/2000
Pages:
156
Product dimensions:
5.89(w) x 8.52(h) x 0.65(d)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

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Venola in Love 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago