Bound To Stay Bound

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Full Text Reviews:

Booklist - 04/15/2009 Fifteen-year-old Carly has a problem—two, actually: her younger sister Anna’s new “real live Hooters-esque boobs.” While Carly was away getting self-actualized at a back-to-nature camp, Anna was busy turning into a hottie, a state that makes “granola-girl” Carly uncomfortably jealous. Now back in her privileged Atlanta suburb, Carly is struggling with feelings of insecurity as she tries to reconcile her newly acquired bohemian belief system with the incredible wealth in which she has been raised. In addition, her crush hardly notices her, she feels trapped between her rival best friends, and her parents seem to be growing more distant with each other by the day. Writing for an older teen audience, Myracle empathetically explores issues of socioeconomic class, sibling rivalry, and parental influence in a story that is deeper and more nuanced than the title and cutesy cover, dotted with rubber ducks and a peace sign, imply. A must-read for fans of Sarah Dessen and Justina Chen Headley. - Copyright 2009 Booklist.

Bulletin for the Center... - 07/01/2009 Coming off a nature high following a summer internship trail-breaking in the Tennessee mountains, Carly wants to resist the plastic, privileged world of shopping, manicures, and more shopping that she has inhabited all her life in the posh Buckhead section of Atlanta. While she was gone, however, her younger sister, Anna, blossomed-as in grew big boobs and became beautiful-sending unwelcome twinges of hypocritical jealousy through Carly’s I-don’t-care-about-appearances façade. As she tries to maintain her breezy, hippie-chick persona, her friends remind her that she is far too rule-bound and judgmental, and that her rejection of suburban values is ultimately a rejection of them as well, a message Carly doesn’t want to hear. Carly’s ambivalences and contradictions lead to some honest self-reflection, particularly where her own family is concerned. Myracle does a remarkably good job foregrounding Carly’s introspection while keeping the plot and character relationships moving at a brisk clip. The relationship between the sisters never overbalances into a straightforward good-guy, bad-guy dichotomy; readers are able to clearly see where Anna’s insecurities come from even though she’s the pretty sister, and where and how Carly abuses the power that comes with competence. The complex, transitional dynamic of a little sister becoming something more like an equal and a big sister learning to balance protection and respect for differences is given full and compassionate examination here; sisters and those who wish for them will enjoy the insights that are possible only from inside the sibling relationship. KC - Copyright 2009 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.

School Library Journal - 08/01/2009 Gr 8–10— This paean to sisters is flat-out wonderful, full of emotion and bittersweet teenage confusion. It tackles faith, racism, sexism, and the tug-of-war close siblings can engage in while establishing their identity. Free-spirited sophomore Carly reacts against the consumerism of the girls' upscale Atlanta neighborhood while she enjoys what it has to offer. Freshman Anna relies on Carly at their prestigious private school, Holy Redeemer. She has developed large breasts that grant her unwanted attention. Carly helps her sister to face down a bullying coach, and the girls support each other against their ber-critical father. Everyone but Carly can see that dependable Roger could be her "love boodle," but she has a crush on Cole, who has "soulful eyes." A sleepover when the girls' parents are away develops into an out-of-control party, and the sisters' trust in one another frays when Carla finds Anna with Cole. Ultimately, however, their bond strengthens. Language is realistic with some swearing. These are girls with hot tempers, bruised egos, and great love for one another. Readers will love them, too.—Tina Zubak, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, PA - Copyright 2009 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

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