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Boys, Bears, and a Serious Pair of Hiking Boots Reprint Edition
Contributor(s): McDonald, Abby

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ISBN: 0763649945     ISBN-13: 9780763649944
Publisher: Candlewick Pr
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Binding Type: Paperback - See All Available Formats & Editions
Published: April 2011

Annotation: Can a boy-hungry Jersey girl survive the wilds of Canada with her eco-identity intact? A witty new YA novel from the author of SOPHOMORE SWITCH. (Age 14 and up)

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?
Additional Information
Library of Congress Subjects:
Self-perception; Fiction.
Wilderness areas; Fiction.
Environmental protection; Fiction.
Dewey: [Fic]
LCCN: 2009026015
Lexile Measure: 740
Academic/Grade Level: Grade 10-12, Age 15-18
Book type: Juvenile Fiction
Physical Information: 8.25" H x 5.50" W x 0.75" (0.60 lbs) 293 pages
Scholastic Reading Counts Info
Quiz #: Q49604
Reading Level: 5.5   Interest Level: Grades 9-12   Point Value: 17.0
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.

Contributor Bio(s): by McDonald, a recent graduate of Oxford University, made her authorial debut with the critically acclaimed novel SOPHOMORE SWITCH. She lives in London.

From the Hardcover edition.

Reviewed by Horn Book Guide Reviews (Horn Book Guide Reviews 2010 Fall)
New Jersey bred environmentalist Jenna spends the summer in the "wild, rugged wilderness" of Canada, where she has trouble fitting in with the local teenagers, who mock her preachy ideals. Exploring nature and listening to her new friends, Jenna learns to appreciate the environment from a new vantage point. A scenic backdrop, a strong cast of secondary characters, and believable character development sustain the novel's momentum. Copyright 2010 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2010 March #4)

The summer before her senior year, Jenna, a spirited environmentalist, leaves New Jersey for British Columbia to live with her godmother, Susie, and immerse herself in the outdoorsy life she idealizes. She assumes that her "Green Teen" initiative will be well-received and is disappointed to be mocked by local boys and shunned by Susie's goth stepdaughter ("I wonder if all my talk of sustainable eco-friendliness is making me sound like a good Green Teen activist—or just a spoiled brat"). Meanwhile, her best friend is becoming an eco extremist; her parents are edging toward divorce; and local stud Reeve pressures her to keep their romance a secret. Despite her environmental passion, Jenna is believably insecure, but slowly gets her footing, making inroads with her friends and taking inspiration from The Modern Mountain Man's Survival Guide ("Nature ain't ever going to change for you—you've got to make your plans around what you can't control"). McDonald (Sophomore Switch) composes a fun summer read, closely examining the conflict between sticking to one's beliefs and learning the art of compromise. Ages 14–up. (Apr.)

[Page 72]. Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.

Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 2010 April)

Gr 9 Up—Jenna and the Green Teens are on a mission to save the planet. They are a force in their New Jersey community and a positive voice for activism. They even have some serious plans for the summer, until a series of events results in Jenna spending the summer with her godmother, Susie, and her new husband and hostile stepdaughter in Canada. Shortly after she arrives, she's sorry she came. Susie, renovating her home into a bed-and-breakfast, cannot afford Jenna's conservation suggestions. The local teens, mostly boys, see her as a big city girl with ideas that focus on the planet, but ignore people. In a town hurt by environmental regulations, Jenna begins to realize that there is more than one side to the issue. But instead of forgetting about her concerns altogether, she takes a different approach to help the B and B and the town. She focuses on nature and the beauty around her to draw tourists, and the local teens buy in. While some of the incidents seem a bit far-fetched, the relationships among the characters are authentic. Jenna ceases to be a militant conservationist and becomes an introspective one. She makes the best choices she can for the people around her, the environment, and herself. Her story will have strong appeal for teens who like realistic fiction with great relationships and perhaps a hint of romance.—Melyssa Malinowski, Kenwood High School, Baltimore, MD

[Page 164]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
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