Gr 8 Up-Music is everything. This is one thing that Elijah and Kristen can agree on. Beyond that, they could not be more different. Elijah is part of the band Ride Out, known for its head-banging, heavy metal, hard rock sound. He dreams of hitting it big and using the money to help his sister Anna, who has special needs. Kristen, on the other hand, yearns to become a star on the Broadway stage. The teens' worlds collide when Elijah and his friends attend Kristen's high school musical production of Cats and Elijah cannot take his eyes off Kristen. One tweet about Elijah changes their lives forever as their social media war takes center stage. Amid their Twitter battle, and with her grandmother Etta's guidance, Kristen decides to join Ride Out. Will it give her the edge she needs to get into a competitive theater program? Or will the teens' lives spiral out of control as the backlash from their social media war becomes very real? Blount writes authentically; both protagonists' voices are distinct. The author explores the rapidly consuming world of social media and how it affects relationships online and in real life. VERDICT A relevant read and must-have for all YA collections.-Elizabeth Blake, Brooklyn Public Library
"Elijah and Kristen's personal evolutions through the novel, along with their chemistry, feel as authentic as the conflicts they face. A genuine plot filled with steady tension that will keep readers hooked.
" - RT Book Reviews, 4 Stars
About the Author
Nicholas Mondelli is an aspiring author, poet, and artist. A hobbyist with his fingers in multiple projects-including writing a biography on his grandfather, the late Italian-American Joe Mondelli-he has been on stage for most of his life and has been singing and playing instruments just as long. The narrator of several audiobooks and children's videos, he currently studies English at the University of Toledo.