Gr 9 Up-Izzy's mother died two years ago. Since then, she and her father have become best friends. When he tells her that he is going to marry his girlfriend, the 16-year-old's world is shaken. He says he wants to be a "real" family again, but Izzy feels that they already are. In fact, as far as she is concerned, she still has a mother: "Okay, we can't exactly go shopping, but I don't like shopping anyway." Through conversations with the people Izzy works with in a retirement home and her boyfriend, and a crisis with her troubled brother that brings her closer to her new stepmother, the teen comes to terms with her changing world. She has filled a little red notebook with her mother's various rules to live by: "-I liked knowing my mother's rules, even the weird ones that I didn't get." She has sustained a certain balance in her life relying on them, and they have kept her mother at hand. She comes to realize, however, that the old rules cannot always apply. This book is written in easy, sometimes frank language. It would be accessible to reluctant readers, yet has a moving and sophisticated story line.-Elizabeth Fernandez, Brunswick Middle School, Greenwich, CT Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.