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Rocket Summer Paperback – November 11, 2012
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About the Author
As a child, Chip wrote terrible poetry and read hundreds of novels. In high school he wrote more poetry, also terrible, and a scifi novel that in retrospect is unreadable. He had clearly learned nothing. Blind to the mounting evidence, in college he studied art, creative writing, and children's literature with the amazing Lucille Clifton. Then he got a job selling paper. 17 years later, he wrote his first screenplay, Rocket Summer, which sold ten years after that. See? Don't ever give up. Then he turned the screenplay into this novel, which is way better than the stuff he used to write. Promise.
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Top customer reviews
by Chip Street.
I've just had the pleasure of reading Rocket Summer. Oh, what a ride! This is the fast paced story of a group of kids during one summer in Alice, Nevada, a desert town bypassed by the interstate. It is a great reminder of lives lived with creativity and abandon and 'making the most of what you've got.' The characters are beautifully developed and the dialogue perfect. And while I loved the wild ride, I most appreciated the quiet narrative taking place all around the main event. These kids are dealing with some weighty issues that are captured with intense realism and yet with incredible tenderness. I genuinely cared about these kids. I felt their pain and also the unbridled joy only kids seem to be able to feel.
This was a quick read, although I found myself re-reading passages just for the sheer pleasure of it. The book is filled with literary and beautiful language as well as a very astute understanding of what it means to be young, and on your own in a world that can sometimes brutal and preoccupied. I am recommending Rocket Summer to my adult friends and my twelve-year-old granddaughter is getting a copy for Christmas!
"I read Rocket Summer, by Chip Street, in one sitting. I just couldn't tear myself away. It is very interesting to see how each kid deals with their lives, and to follow the progress of the rocket car. Their personalities are realistic, and each scene in this fabulous story is exciting. Wonderfully, I couldn't predict the end, which made me want to read about it more! I would definitely recommend Rocket Summer to people my age, but I wouldn't be surprised if an adult enjoyed it, too!"
-Ruby, age 11
And to add my own review, now that I've read it myself, I have to say I flat-out LOVED this book. What an emotional ride. And the subtlety, the elegance, with which Chip handled the abusive situations, and the humor and grace with which the kids bore up against their hardships, was just enthralling and beautiful. Wonderful, wonderful job.
This is the kind of book that kids will read, and feel like maybe they've read their first real adult novel... and their parents will read and feel like they're a kid again. I highly recommend Rocket Summer, and I'm already looking forward to his next book.