Thursday, September 23, 2010

Boys, Bears, and a Serious Pair of Hiking Boots

Boys, Bears, and a Serious Pair of Hiking Boots
by Abby McDonald

Jenna may hail from the ’burbs of New Jersey, but Green Teen activism is her life. So when her mom suggests they spend the summer at Grandma’s Florida condo, Jenna pleads instead to visit her hippie godmother, Susie, up in rural Canada. Jenna is psyched at the chance to commune with this nature she’s heard about — and the cute, plaidwearing boys she’s certain must roam there. But after a few run-ins with local wildlife (from a larger-than-life moose to Susie’s sullen Goth stepdaughter to a hot but hostile boy named Reeve), Jenna gets the idea that her long-held ideals, like vegetarianism and conservation, don’t play so well with this population of real outdoorsmen. A dusty survival guide offers Jenna amusing tips on navigating the wilderness — but can she learn to navigate the turns of her heart?

This book was only so-so for me. I had really high expectations, I suppose, because I loved McDonald's Sophomore Switch so much when I read it earlier this year. This just didn't strike me the same way.

Although I didn't really connect wholeheartedly to Jenna's environmental dilemma, I did love the message about learning to become a well rounded not just focus on a single aspect of one's personality. I also loved the subplot about one of the character's coming out.

This wasn't a bad book by any means, but I don't feel like it's a must read.

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