Category Archives: Funny

Swim the Fly – Review

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Title: Swim the Fly

Author: Don Calame

Every summer, best friends Matt, Sean, and Coop set themselves a goal. When they were younger their goals were simple, like collect 1,000 golf balls before the end of the season. This year, the goal is fairly epic:  to see a naked girl – not in a magazine or online – a living, breathing naked girl.  The problem? None of them has a girlfriend. In fact, none of them has ever even been on a date, so how they’re going to see a naked girl is anyone’s guess.

As crazy as this goal is, however, it begins to look almost feasible when compared to the situation Matt has gotten himself into. You see, in order to impress the hot new girl on their swim team, Matt has volunteered to swim the fly – the 100-meter butterfly, that is. The thing is, Matt can’t even swim one length of the pool, let along the four lengths that make up the 100-meter race – and how he’s gonna make it through the summer is also anyone’s guess…

This book had me laughing from start to finish. At one point I was literally crying from laughing so hard. (The scene involves laxatives, cross-dressing, and the girls’ locker room. How could you not cry?)  Matt is an awesome narrator, and his friends and family are equally appealing. Everything about this book is fab, especially the fact that Coop and Sean have their own stories to tell in Beat the Band and Call the Shots.

–Lisa, Teen Librarian

12 Things to Do Before You Crash and Burn – Review

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Title: 12 Things to Do Before You Crash and Burn

Author: James Proimos

Hercules Martino’s dad just died, but he’s not too broken up about it because his dad was a major jerk. Still, Herc’s been acting like a major jerk himself, so his mom ships him down to Baltimore to spend a couple weeks with his uncle and pull himself together.  On the train, Herc sits next to the Girl of His Dreams but doesn’t do anything about it. Soon after he arrives, Uncle Anthony gives Herc 12 things to do before summer’s over. Things like

  • Find the best pizza joint in town
  • Go on 7 job interviews in one day
  • Eat a meal with a stranger

Herc alternates between searching for Girl of His Dreams and completing Uncle Anthony’s 12-part project, and of course, the two eventually collide.

This is probably the shortest YA book I’ve ever read (120 pages). I wish it was twice as long because I wanted more of Hercules, more of his snarky commentary, and more about his epic adventures.

–Lisa, Teen Librarian

Hold Me Closer, Necromancer – Review

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Title: Hold Me Closer, Necromancer

Author: Lish McBride

Nineteen-year-old Sam is stuck in a dead-end job flipping burgers and hanging out watching old movies with his slacker friends in Seattle. A late-night prank brings some uncomfortable attention from Douglas, a powerful and malicious necromancer, and then Sam and his friends are violently attacked. Turns out Sam has the makings of an equally powerful necromancer, which his mother has been suppressing for years in order to protect him.  It’s too late to hide, though, and Douglas has plans for Sam that alternate between slavery and death. Good thing Seattle is full of weird creatures, because Sam needs all the supernatural help he can get to unleash his powers and escape a very unpleasant, very short future.

This is a debut novel, but you’d never know it. The book is well-written, fast-paced, and switches back and forth from seriously scary to laugh-out-loud  funny at the drop of a hat. A great book for older teens.

–Lisa, Teen Librarian

Charlie Joe Jackson’s Guide to Not Reading – Review

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Title: Charlie Joe Jackson’s Guide to Not Reading

Author: Tommy Greenwald

Charlie Joe Jackson is determined to get through middle school without ever finishing a book. To meet this ambitious goal, he comes up with increasingly crazy schemes to help him succeed, and the amount of time and effort he puts into not reading is truly impressive.

This is a fun, quick book to read, and it includes 25 of Charlie Joe’s helpful tips on how to Not-Read a book.

–Lisa, Teen Librarian

P.S. Charlie Joe Jackson’s Guide to Extra Credit comes out this August.

Au Revoir, Crazy European Chick – Review

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Title: Au Revoir, Crazy European Chick

Author: Joe Schreiber

How bummed would you be if your mom made you take your family’s dumpy, frumpy Lithuanian exchange student to the prom – especially if your band has a gig the same night? And how freaked out would you be if she turned out to be a super-hot assassin on a mission to kill?

Perry Stormaire’s prom night turns into a nonstop ride through New York City with car chases, angry hitmen, explosions, and even a bear fight. There’s lots of humor, and some serious moments, too. This book is the definition of action-packed! The ending hints at a sequel, and I hope we get one sooner than later.

eta: As it happens, Perry’s Killer Playlist comes out November, 2012.

–Lisa, Teen Librarian