Cricket Montgomery has been thrown under the short bus. Shipped off to a summer camp by her father, Cricket is forced to play babysitter to a bunch of whiny kids—or so she thinks. When she realizes this camp is actually for teens with special needs, Cricket doubts she has what it takes to endure twenty-four hours, let alone two weeks.
Thanks to her dangerously cute co-counselor, Quinn, there may be a slim chance for survival. However, between the campers' unpredictability and disregard for personal space, Cricket's limits get pushed. She will have to decide if suffering through her own handicapped hell is worth a summer romance—and losing her sanity.
|Publisher:||Running Press Book Publishers|
|Product dimensions:||5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 0.80(d)|
|Age Range:||12 - 18 Years|
About the Author
Bethany Crandell writes young adult novels because the feelings that come with life's "first" times are too good not to relive again and again. Summer on the Short Bus is Crandell's debut. She lives in San Diego with her husband and two daughters, one of whom is differently-abled. Visit Bethany online at bethanycrandell.com and Twitter @bethanycrandell.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Well hello there, emotional train wreck. Summer on the Short Bus had me feeling it all. I cried. I snorted & giggled. I felt angry angry angry. I rolled my eyes. I smirked. I felt relief. My heart grew and grew (yep, just like the Grinch). This book is such a strong debut! Bethany Crandell took a ridiculously difficult topic and made it accessible to teens everywhere. Fear of the unknown prompts people to behave in ways they wouldn't normally- and this is what Cricket and her story is all about. Privileged (but not without her own demons), Cricket Montgomery is thrust into a world unknown to her. Her reaction is both appalling and understandable- and it is that brave candor that Crandell used while writing this that makes this novel stick out among the rest. Cricket has never really been exposed to anyone with a disability, so image her reaction when she learns that she will be a camp counselor at a summer camp for disabled youth. Well, if you can imagine the worst and darkest thoughts you could have about another human, that is likely what you'll find in the pages of Summer on the Short Bus as we hear the inner- and sometimes outer (oh no) dialogue of teenage Crick. I will admit that some of it is cringe worthy, but nevertheless, it is honest and raw- and some are things I know the kids say- coming from the experience of teaching middle school, kids can be downright cruel. The magical part of this novel isn't the transparency though- it is the clarity that comes as Cricket wakes the hell up from her princess life and realizes some harsh real world reality. Those campers teach Cricket more about herself in the short time she is there than she's figured out in her entire life. The changes we witness in her are beautiful- messy and real, they are a true testament to the human ability to adapt, change, and grow. She is the perfect model for teens who think that they can't change. Summer on the Short Bus proves that every person has the capability to grow and change- if you allow your mistakes to teach you. The other cornerstone of this novel is kindness. I took away the overall feel-good notion of being kind, simply for being so. I think kids will be able to pick up on this vibe as they read and will be able to recognize that sometimes being kind is the best gift you can give another. Kindness and gratitude go a long way, and our youth need to see such examples. They need to see it in good literature like Summer on the Short Bus, in the people leading the way, in their families, and in society as a whole. This world could use a group hug, and I think this novel is just the thing. I highly recommend this book- I'm considering reading it with my middle school class during summer school this year. Know a kid that thinks the world revolves around them?- toss this book their way. An excellent novel for any teen, but especially good for those struggling with some anger, this is a book I would thrust into their hands. Some people may have issues with the things Cricket says about disabled people, but sticking it out to the end is very much worth it. Like I said- it can be cringe-worthy, but the end result and Cricket's metamorphosis is what you need to focus on. Beautifully done!
I don't remember how I got started talking to the lovely Bethany Crandell, but somehow I did, so of course I had to read her debut novel. Talk about a summer read! SUMMER ON THE SHORT BUS is about seventeen-year-old Cricket Montgomery, a girl who is used to being spoiled and getting out of trouble as soon as she's gotten into it. When her dad ships her off to help out at a summer camp, Cricket is appalled, but she has no idea what she's gotten herself into. This is no ordinary summer camp-- it's a camp for disabled teens-- and Cricket is so not happy to find this out. Though, the hottie counselor who could be on tv for being a Zac Efron look-alike is more than enough reason for her to try and stick it out. After her dad won't let her come home, that is. SOTSB is one of the best books I've ever read simply for this reason: There is no sugarcoating. Kids who have disabilities are made fun of. They're thought of differently than everyone who is "Normal", and Crandell shows this in the most honest way possible. Sure, some of the things said might make you cringe, and they may hit a nerve if you personally know someone who is disabled, but this is nothing you haven't seen or heard or noticed before. If you read this, and you find it offensive, I urge you to reread it, because if this is the case, then you've missed the spirit of the ENTIRE story. Also, the snark. Who doesn't love a good, snarky character? I give SUMMER ON THE SHORT BUS a golden five stars. I recommend it to anyone and everyone, especially if you find yourself to be one of those people that is prejudiced against handicapped people. Let this book change the way you think. Take a seat on the Short Bus.