First and Then

6 CDs. 7:08 hrs. Brilliance. 2015. $24.99. ISBN 9781511324953.
Gr 8 Up—Mills captures the exhilaration and agony of being a teen in this relatable story. Devon Tennyson is happy watching Friday night games from the bleachers, nursing an unrequited crush, and blissfully ignoring whatever's going to happen after high school. But the sudden appearance of her cousin Foster and Devon's unexpected interest in her school's star running back, Ezra, turn her life upside down. The author also narrates, easily handling the tricky lower range of teenage boys as well as several adult males and a host of female characters of various ages. Mills transitions among the characters without missing a beat. The conversations between Devon and her cousin Foster, especially, demonstrate both her talent for voices and her pitch-perfect ear for teenage dialogue.
VERDICT Listeners in middle and high school—and plenty of adults—will be begging for a sequel.

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