Friday, December 11, 2015

The Sister Solution

The Sister Solution
by Trudi Trueit
Aladdin, 2015. Fiction. 240p.

Sammi’s little sister, Jorgianna, has always been the brilliant one, winning competitions and awards and getting all the attention. Sammi doesn’t mind so much since she has her own 8th grade life to live. But when Jorgianna’s teachers decide it’s time for her to skip two whole grades, making her Sammi’s new classmate, Sammi feels like her world is ending. Embarrassed by her sister’s outrageous fashion sense and jealous of her immediate entry into the popular clique that Sammi herself has been trying to join for months, Sammi makes Jorgianna agree to a contract that they will have absolutely zero contact at school.

On the other side of things, Jorgianna wishes she had her sister’s beauty, grace, and social skills. She wishes Sammi could be proud of her achievements and would love her help adjusting to 8th grade, but with Sammi’s new hostile attitude, Jorgianna decides to go it alone. Will these two sisters ever discover that they are stronger together?

This is a great tween book told in alternating chapters that presents a realistic sibling relationship: at times combative, often complicated, but deep down, loving and loyal (without being sticky sweet). The story is full of school and popularity struggles, including junior high crushes, a first kiss, and a little “mean girl” action, but mostly it’s about family bonds – with siblings, parents, and grandparents – and how they help us navigate through life.

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