Struts & Frets

293p. 978-0-81094-174-8.
Gr 9-Up Music is the center of Sammy Bojar's world, despite his therapist mother's urging that he pursue a more profitable career and stable lifestyle. Though he is now sinking into dementia, Sammy's grandfather, a jazz musician, is still able to encourage his grandson to follow his dream: "You're like me]. Always reaching for the moon." When Sammy's band decides to enter a competition that could result in a chance to record in a real studio, he fluctuates between his extravagant dreams of rock-star fame and his nagging fear that the group is far from ready to perform. Meanwhile, he struggles with the realization that a longtime friend wants to be his girlfriend. When it becomes clear that their romance is about to become more physical, Jen5 responsibly blurts out a reminder not to "forget to]uh]go to the "drugstore" before you come over." The resulting hilarious scene in which Sammy is utterly baffled by the vast variety of condoms on display is just one of the narrative's many entertaining depictions of the turmoil of growing up. A playlist identifies the songs mentioned in the text, while a classroom scene in which Sammy's teacher reads aloud from "Macbeth" makes the origin of the book's title clear. This debut novel will find an audience not just with music fans, but also with those who appreciate a good coming-of-age story."Ginny Gustin, Sonoma County Library System, Santa Rosa, CA" Copyright 2010 Media Source Inc.
All Sammy wants to do is play guitar; unfortunately, with his band there's more drama than there is music. Plus, he starts dating his best friend and must cope with his grandpa's deterioration. Sammy's voice isn't always convincing, but his passion (each chapter title is one of his favorite songs) comes across loud and clear.

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