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The Difference Between You and Me Hardcover – March 15, 2012


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 1020L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Viking Juvenile (March 15, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0670011282
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670011285
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.8 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #232,254 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for The Difference Between You and Me by Madeleine George:

"...this heartbreaking tale is powerfully raw..." —Kirkus, starred review

"The characters are vivid ... and the desire Jesse and Emily feel for each other jumps off the page .... Readers of Julie Ann Peters, Laurie Halse Anderson, Sarah Zarr, and Sarah Dessen will welcome this addition to collections of realistic fiction." —School Library Journal, starred review

"...especially memorable." —Horn Book

"Teens expecting a run-of-the-mill romance are in for a surprise with George's (Looks, 2008) smart, multilayered novel told in alternating viewpoints." —Booklist

"...warm, complex, hopeful, and original..." —BCCB

About the Author

Madeleine George's two novels are published by Viking Children's Books. Her first book, LOOKS, was one of Booklist's 2008 Top Ten First Novels for Youth, and was a 2009 ALA Best Book for Young Adults. Her second book, THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN YOU AND ME, was a Kirkus Best Teen Book of 2012, a Junior Library Guild selection and an ALA Rainbow List selection, and was chosen as Atlantic Wire's Best Complicated Romance of 2012.

Madeleine's plays, including THE (CURIOUS CASE OF THE) WATSON INTELLIGENCE, SEVEN HOMELESS MAMMOTHS WANDER NEW ENGLAND, PRECIOUS LITTLE, and THE ZERO HOUR, have been produced at theaters around the country, and are published by Samuel French.

Visit her at madeleinegeorge.com.

More About the Author

Madeleine George's two novels are published by Viking Children's Books. Her first book, LOOKS, was one of Booklist's 2008 Top Ten First Novels for Youth, and was a 2009 ALA Best Book for Young Adults. Her second book, THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN YOU AND ME, was a Kirkus Best Teen Book of 2012, a Junior Library Guild selection and an ALA Rainbow List selection, and was chosen as Atlantic Wire's Best Complicated Romance of 2012.

Madeleine's plays, including THE (CURIOUS CASE OF THE) WATSON INTELLIGENCE, SEVEN HOMELESS MAMMOTHS WANDER NEW ENGLAND, PRECIOUS LITTLE, and THE ZERO HOUR, have been produced at theaters around the country, and are published by Samuel French.

Visit her at madeleinegeorge.com.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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I'm pretty sure she'll grow up to be a republican, but that's really neither here nor there.
pandareads
Jesse and Emily were two original, and very different, characters and I enjoyed getting to know them.
The Book Scout
I found the novel insightful and humorous, a tale of a teenager balancing attraction and values.
Artistic soul

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Lori VINE VOICE on March 19, 2012
Format: Hardcover
This book really wasn't anything like I was expecting. I thought it was mostly going to be a love story about Emily coming to terms with who she is. That really wasn't the case at all. The story revolves around Jesse the most and it's really about her finding herself, standing up for what she believes in, and just growing up. Emily's role in the story is a bit smaller and infuriating.

I really loved Jesse. She was very complex and very unique. She didn't care to be different but her feelings for Emily really made her vulnerable. That made her feel extremely believable to me. Throughout the story Jesse grows. She has to figure out what's more important to her, her secret relationship with Emily or her beliefs. I had a lot of fun watching her journey and I think we could all stand to be a little more like Jesse.

Emily on the other hand....The book is told from alternating points of view with Jesse in the spotlight more often, but when Emily had her turn I couldn't help but pity this poor naive girl. She is vice president of student council and very serious about it. She also has a very serious boyfriend, but she meets Jesse once a week for a short make out session. She was very unlikeable, but I think she was supposed to be. That's just who she was. It was a great way to show the contrast between them. Props to Madeleine George for writing such very different but equally interesting characters.

The Difference Between You and Me isn't a romance so don't go into it expecting one. It's an intelligent story about a girl struggling to figure out who she is in a unique situation. I enjoyed every second of it and I think you will too!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Liviania VINE VOICE on June 10, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Madeleine George's sophomore book shifts between three points of view. It's a little distracting at first since both Emily and Esther's sections are told in first person and Jesse's is in third. But George's writing keeps the transition from being too jarring.

Jesse Halberstam is out and proud. She goes around the school in an awful pair of boots and a homemade haircut hanging up posters with her manifesto for the liberation of weirdos. But she has a secret. Every Tuesday she meets Emily Miller at the library to make out. Emily's in the closet and staying there. She even has a boyfriend, Mike McDade. Meanwhile, Jesse meets Esther Meinz in detention and the two join forces in activism.

StarMart wants to put a store in their town. They're having trouble getting land, so they're trying to put pressure on the town to let them end. That includes funding the Vander High School's dance and athletic programs. Emily, the student council vice president, orchestrated the corporate sponsorship. Jesse and Emily may be in love, but the closet and their opposing political views are tearing them apart.

At times I thought Esther's point of view wasn't needed, but I thought the character was very important to the story. Everyone thinks she and Jesse are together, but neither of them show any sign of being interested. In fact, her sexuality is never discussed. She and Jesse are simply friends, and as Esther never brings her dating life up, it's none of Jesse's business. They connect in plenty of other ways, including their experiences with each of their mother's breast cancer.

I loved Jesse's relationship with her parents. Fran and Arthur pay attention to their daughter and are their to scold her when she gets in trouble.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By pandareads on May 3, 2012
Format: Hardcover
You know I'm going to read anything with Laurie Halse Anderson's endorsement on the cover. I mean really, she's the queen of thought-provoking YA contemporaries. But even before I knew she liked the book I'd been wanting to read it because the description really drew me in.

Jesse and Emily are complete opposites. Jesse cuts hair with a swiss army knife into a short, boyish hairstyle and dresses in boyish clothing topped off with hideous fishing boots. Emily, on the other hand, is VP of the student council and wears cardigans with pearl buttons. But for some reason, they're drawn to each other and keep meeting each other in secret to make out. But when an ideological issue draws them apart, will their "relationship" be able to withstand it?

I really enjoyed this quick novel. I devoured in just a couple hours this afternoon and it was the perfect book to read all in one sitting. I was hoping to see Jesse and Emily have a relationship, but really all they have is lust for each other. (Don't worry, the book is not graphic!) I was glad to see the storyline was much more than whether or not someone was going to come out of the closet, instead the book was more about what it's like to be a young person with a strongly held belief.

That was the part of the book I most related to. I remember that feeling of being in high school and having an ideological belief that you feel you must take action on. For my friends and myself that was starting a chapter of the Gay-Straight Alliance at our school (only to be squashed by the blasted administration!) For Jesse and her new friend Esther, it was stopping a Wal-Mart like corporation called StarMart from coming to town and killing all the locally owned businesses.
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