Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The most important thing is knowing who you are

So many of us never take the time to sit back, relax, and think of all the reasons to be happy. If we did, we'd realize there's so much to be happy for. That's why I really enjoyed reading REASONS TO BE HAPPY by Katrina Kittle.

With a glance at the cover, you'd think this is your girly-girl upbeat love story (bubbly letters, pink and blue, doodle stars, etc...), but that's not the case--and in a definitely good way! Instead, we dive into the life of Hannah, an eighth grader who is moving to a new school and whose parents just happen to be A-list celebrities. But that's not all. Hannah's mom is sick, Hannah doesn't quite fit in at the new school, and she's stuck hanging out with the B-Squad, a group of girls who are fake and not like Hannah at all. As a result, Hannah finds herself transforming into somebody she doesn't even know. The old Hannah used to keep a notebook full of reasons to be happy, but the girl who used to love running and making art now faces the harsh reality of dealing with change and death. So what does she turn to--bulimia.

Kittle dives into this complex subject and how self-esteem can affect a young teen. What I love about this story is that Hannah is a strong girl and we witness an amazing transformation of how she finds herself again--much by traveling to Africa with her Aunt who is a documentary filmmaker documenting the plight of the country's orphans. Along the way, Hannah's journey reminds us all of what we have to be grateful for and as Hannah says herself, the most important one is knowing who you are.

Additional Information:
Reading level: Young Adult
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky (October 1, 2011)
ISBN-10: 1402260202
ISBN-13: 978-1402260209
Source of review copy: Publicist
Disclosure: Some of the books I review are received from publishers , PR agencies, and authors, but it does not sway my opinion of the book.

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