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Rush Hour: Sin (Rush Hour (Delacorte Paperback)) Paperback – April 13, 2004

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 8 Up–This title bills itself as neither a magazine nor a book, but a cutting-edge literary journal of contemporary voices to be published twice yearly. Contributors include authors who have distinguished themselves in young adult literature. Forms include poetry, fiction, and nonfiction and include contemporary and historical accounts that somehow touch on the broad topic of sin. Some pieces stand alone without any difficulty. A summer intern at a public relations firm learns firsthand an unappealing truth about marketing in Joan Bauer's story, "Smoke." The memory of an ever-advancing sexual experience is re-created in Sonya Sones's poem, "Massage." The witch-hunts of Salem are discussed in Marc Aronson's essay, "The Sins of Salem." Other examples of inhumanity against humans are revealed in Hazel Rochman's "What Would I Have Done?" While many of the selections, particularly the nonfiction, are well done, the book is likely to have difficulty finding an audience. The back cover copy is provocative, leading teens to believe what lies within will be entertaining and a bit "over the edge." While that's true of some of the selections, readers who expect pure and even provocative entertainment will be disappointed. The novel excerpts, most of which don't read well out of context, will be lost on everyone. In the end, the thread that unites the pieces is just too tenuous to make a satisfying whole.–Catherine Ensley, Latah County Free Library District, Moscow, ID
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Gr. 9-12. For the debut issue of a literary journal more than a decade in the making, YA author and anthologist Cart has chosen a theme as provocative as it is broad. Most entries (there are 18, including short stories, poems, nonfiction essays, and several pieces of black-and-white artwork) wear their thematic connections lightly. What unites them is the sense of the definition of YA being stretched beyond its traditional upper limit. Several characters are beyond high school (one even has an MBA), and the longest contribution, Terry Davis' "The Silk Ball," set in a war-ravaged Cambodia of the 1970s, dwells on the violence so pointedly that the result is closer to Apocalypse Now than to the edgiest of existing YA fare. It's a mixed bag, with contributions by Brock Cole, Joan Bauer, and Sonya Sones likely to appeal to the broadest audience. Will Rush Hour assume a hallowed place among sophisticated teen readers, similar to the literary magazine GRANTA in the adult literary world? Probably not right away, but one hopes that the publisher will give this ambitious project plenty of time to find its audience. V.2, Bad Boys, will follow in September; each installment of the journal will be published simultaneously in hard- and softcover. Jennifer Mattson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Series: Rush Hour (Delacorte Paperback) (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 230 pages
  • Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers (April 13, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385730314
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385730310
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,238,436 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
Young adult fiction has developed beyond the issue- or relationship-driven novels with which it has long been associated. Today, YA fiction reflects the complexity and ambiguity of the contemporary teen experience. Young adult literature has been waiting a long time for a literary journal to legitimize the genre. RUSH HOUR, a twice yearly "journal of contemporary voices," has the potential to do just that.
The theme of RUSH HOUR's first issue is Sin. Editor Michael Cart has assembled a collection of morally complex pieces under this issue's theme of Sin. Included in the collection are stories, poems and essays by a variety of better and lesser known YA authors, including Brock Cole, Joan Bauer and Emma Donoghue. These pieces cover a variety of material: shoplifting, corporate ethics, social equality, sportsmanship, sexuality and war.
The most striking and potentially controversial story in the collection is "The Silk Ball" by Terry Davis, which weaves Hmong folklore into a story about the United States' secret war in Laos during the Vietnam period. Graphic violence and sexuality punctuate a story filled with poetic vision, longing and loss. Adults may be hesitant to let their young ones read this material, never mind the fact that the characters in the story --- and the age of actual soldiers in military conflicts then and now --- are closer to the age of the intended readers than the adults who would want to shield impressionable young minds from such material.
Another marvelous piece in this issue is a nonfiction essay by Hazel Rochman, "What Would I Have Done?" The essay is illustrated with a pen and ink drawing by Mark Podwal of a fragmented Star of David, complete with the now familiar iconography of railroad tracks, smokestacks and tattooed limbs.
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