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[ Standing Against the Wind ] STANDING AGAINST THE WIND by Jones, Traci L ( Author ) ON Sep - 05 - 2006 Hardcover Hardcover – September 5, 2006
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The plot is captivating, the setting realistic, and Traci L. Jones' language is rich and full of imagery. The metaphorical pictures Jones paints, ranging from mythical dragons to junkyard dogs, are treats for the reader's imagination (and an imagery wonderland for reading teachers). Some young readers (5th or 6th graders), however, may find one chapter of the book in which Patrice is sexually harassed unsettling. Another unsettling issue involves both Patrice and Monty. Although Patrice becomes stronger and more self-assured throughout the novel, the reader has to wonder if she could have achieved this new-found strength and courage without the help of Monty (a strong male presence) and his protection. Additionally, considering Monty's character, one might ask whether a young rogue needs a helpless maiden to protect in order to bring out the good in him.
These quandaries, however, do not detract from the appealing quality of Jones' Standing Against the Wind. It is sure to interest middle school and junior high students. The characters are real--peers any student might encounter regularly. The message is also very clear and relevant for students this age: teens are not helpless pawns in life with no choice or control over their own actions and destinies. I look forward to hearing more from Traci L. Jones.