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Aspen by [Crane, Rebekah]
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Aspen Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 64 customer reviews

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Length: 296 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 9 Up—Aspen Yellow-Sunrise Taylor sees dead people, or more precisely, the one dead person who haunts her every waking moment, which is pretty much 24/7 since she can no longer sleep without reliving a terrible car accident. One month before the start of senior year, a head-on collision kills the beautiful and popular Katelyn, and leaves Aspen with a permanent facial scar and a broken leg. The police investigation determines that Katelyn was the driver at fault, but Aspen suspects that she may have been to blame and is actively suppressing the memory to avoid facing that possibility. Once school starts, however, the teen discovers that her senior year will be defined by the accident. Formerly a self-proclaimed outcast, she is now sought out by Katelyn's best friend and other classmates who had previously seemed barely aware of her existence. Her newfound and discomforting notoriety even get her elected as homecoming queen. Further complicating her life are her role-reversed relationship with her pot-smoking mother and the growing feelings she shares with Katelyn's former boyfriend. Aspen's determined avoidance of subconscious guilt, in the form of Katelyn's finger-pointing ghost, put her on a roller-coaster ride toward the brink of physical and emotional collapse. Crane provides a generous helping of dry, often dark, humor to relieve the mounting tension. Colored by its backdrop of present-day Boulder, Colorado with its legal marijuana and retro hippie culture, this is a tight, impeccably paced story with well-defined characters and intriguing relationships that will resonate with older teens.—Cary Frostick, formerly at Mary Riley Styles Public Library, Falls Church, VA

Review

"Colored by its backdrop of present-day Boulder, Colorado with its legal marijuana and retro hippie culture, this is a tight, impeccably paced story with well-defined characters and intriguing relationships that will resonate with older teens." -- School Library Journal
 
 
"Aspen is funny, raw, and uniquely romantic. With an eclectic cast of characters, it's an uncompromising look at tragedy and trauma, perception and reality, and how the worst accident of your life might just be the next best thing to happen to you." -- Jessica Park, Best Selling Author of Left Drowning and Flat-Out Love
 
 
"A funny, thrilling story that made me smile, laugh and thank my lucky stars I wasn't that popular in high school!" - I Love YA Fiction
 
 
"Aspen is a literary gem. This is a great representation of what YA should be. Poignant, earnest, and inspiring." - The Quirky Reader

Product Details

  • File Size: 2977 KB
  • Print Length: 296 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: In This Together Media; 1 edition (May 30, 2014)
  • Publication Date: May 30, 2014
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00KQ171NW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #540,287 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
Previously Posted on leishideaway.blogspot.com

As someone who always has a book with me no matter where I go, I am forever on the lookout for new authors to add to my "To Read" list. Whenever one of my favorite authors highly recommends another author, they often get to move to the top of the list. So, when Jessica Park started talking about Rebekah Crane & provided a NetGalley link for Aspen, I didn't hesitate in requesting & downloading it. Without knowing anything about the book, I started reading & found a surprisingly humorous story of a girl dealing with the aftermath of a traumatic event.

Aspen Yellow-Sunrise Taylor was born under an Aspen tree to a teenage mother who thought she was suffering from a bad case of gas. She has spent most of her life hiding in the background, capturing the world on paper with her charcoal pencil. Her day to day life is filled with her mom Ninny & her friends Kim & Cass. Other than that, she is happy being relatively invisible to her other classmates. All of that changes when she wakes up one day in the hospital broken & bruised, but alive. Katelyn Ryan was not so lucky.

Katelyn was the complete opposite of Aspen. She was beautiful, popular and, if everyone in school is to be believed, perfect. Aspen didn't know Katelyn in life, but in death, she can't seem to shake her. Not only is Aspen being haunted by Katelyn, but suddenly, she is no longer invisible & everyone in school seems to want to get to know her. . .most surprisingly Ben Tyler, Katelyn's boyfriend.

Ninny isn't like any mother I have ever met or read before. As a girl, she was a free-loving, pot smoking, wild child who can only guess at the father of her daughter. As a woman, she's. . .not much different!
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I cannot remember a recent book I have liked as much as Aspen. The main character, Aspen, is emerging from a trauma, an event she can define because she's spent her early teenage years reading a dictionary and knows exactly what a trauma is. When someone asks her a question about how she's feeling, using a certain word, she looks up the definition and then decides if that is how she's feeling. 'Accident' and 'mistake' are two words she spends time with. Was the trauma an accident? Was her mother's pregnancy with her at age 16 an accident or a mistake? I was delighted that her mom thought about the question -- some questions she deflects -- and answered her honestly.
If sci fi and fantasy writers can create literary worlds, so can YA fiction writers. I have never visited Boulder, Colorado, but this book sets it out so well I can picture it in my mind, the spirit of the place, the smells, the way people talk and behave. The writing in this book is so approachable, and funny. It's ironic and sad and painful and joyful. The characters are wonderful, too. Most of them have their own journeys in the story arc. Impressive.
P.S. May I take a moment to say how refreshing and wonderful it is that when a character needs a pretty dress to be on the Homecoming Court, she and a friend go down to a thrift store, look through the racks and choose a dress? The girls in my son's middle school set up a spreadsheet of dresses so no two girls would wear the same dress to the formal. None of those dresses came from a thrift store. But a thrift store dress keeps everything in perspective. It's not the dress -- it's the person wearing it. You can look pretty in a $10 dress. Aspen's friend chooses a dress that will irritate her mother, a yellow tent dress. When Aspen's mother sees her the night of the dance, she says, "Kim, you look like a bottle of mustard." Kim is delighted. I laughed.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Aspen Yellow-Sunrise Taylor sees her perfect classmate Katelyn everywhere. The only problem is that Katelyn’s dead and Aspen feels responsible. After a tragic car accident takes Katelyn’s life and leaves Aspen with a broken leg and a whole lot of guilt, the last thing Aspen needs is a ghost reminding her of the accident. When Apsen gets paired with Katelyn’s boyfriend Ben in Physics lab things get complicated. How could Ben, with his Snuffaluffagus eyelashes and beautiful mouth, be the only person in school who understands what Aspen is going through? As Aspen tries everything in her power to forget the night of the accident she hangs on to reality with her best friends Kim and Cass and her pot-smoking hippie mother Ninny. Despite the confusion of her newfound popularity and the pitying looks she gets from her community, Aspen must find a way to move on and make peace with her past.

Oh, the feels with this book! It’s no secret that I loved Rebekah Crane’s first novel, PLAYING NICE, and Rebekah has done it again with ASPEN. She’s artfully created a high school world where everything is uncertain and nobody knows quite what comes next.

You will fall in love with these characters! Aspen is one of my favorite young adult protagonists ever, with her crazy hair and her quirky sense of humor. She’s just the right amount of sarcastic and unsure as she fights her own demons and struggles to make sense of a new high school reality. Add in her two best friends, Kim and Cass, who are constantly teasing even though they harbor great affection for one another and you’ve got a cast of unforgettable characters.

I loved Ben as Aspen’s love interest!
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