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April/May 2012

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Young Adult THERE YOU'LL FIND ME Jenny B. Jones Read by Jeannie Stith High school student Finley Sinclair begins her senior year as an exchange student in Ireland. Jeannie St i th portrays Finley in a youthful, bubbly voice that is perfect for the fun, humor- ous approach Jones takes to this work of Christian fiction. The people Finley meets in Ireland have a big influence on her journey of self-discovery. These include Beckett Rush—teen heartthrob and star of popular vampire films— who has a smooth, deep voice tinged with an Irish brogue—and Finley's adopted grandmother—the focus of a school project—who has a raspy, stilted voice that matches her curmudgeonly personality. The production includes an interview with the author, who talks about her inspiration for this story and how she became a writer. E.N. Oasis Audio 8.5 hrs. Unabridged Young Adult Trade Ed.: CD (also DD ISBN 9781613750131 $27.99 ) WHY WE BROKE UP Daniel Handler Read by Khristine Hvam Min is wri t ing the mother of al l break-up letters to Ed, which she will add to a box of mementos of their doomed relationship and dump at his door. Khristine Hvam, surprisingly, never lets bitterness or regret take over her first-person narration as the jilted girl. Hvam particularly shines in the voicing of Min, Min's friends, and Ed's friends. The story is well trod, but what sets this tale of heartbreak apart is the collaboration between Handler's bitter- sweet prose and Maria Kalman's quirky illustrations. For the audiobook, the art- work comes in PDF, but nothing cues the listener to view the images. Instead, seemingly random sound effects vary in clarity, quality, and effectiveness. This is why the printed version of this book is the better choice. M.M.O. Hachette Audio 6.75 hrs. Unabridged Young Adult Trade Ed.: CD (also DD ISBN 9781611132960 $26.98 ) AudioGO Library Ed.: CD (also PRE ) ISBN 9781611135374 $59.99 ALMOST PERFECT Brian Katcher Read by Kirby Heyborne Kirby Heyborne's performance of Almost Perfect is perfect. He nails each character and delivers raw emotion without draw- ing attention to the performance itself. High school senior Logan's first girlfriend cheated on him. He can't get over her— until he meets Sage, a crazy, beautiful, curvy, well-muscled girl who is almost six feet tall. Sage doesn't date and won't say why. After months as "just friends," their first kiss spurs Sage to tell her secret: She was born a boy. Heyborne voices Logan's feelings of betrayal, and near-violent revulsion, with hair-raising believability. Both teens defend their sexual identities in this compelling and compassionate story about love and transgender sexuality. A.M.P. Listening Library 10.5 hrs. Unabridged Young Adult Trade Ed.: CD Library Ed.: CD ISBN 9780307942272 $44.00 (also DD ISBN 9780307942296 $44.00 ) Heyborne's performance of Almost Perfect is perfect. HOW TO SAVE A LIFE Sara Zarr Read by Ariadne Meyers, Cassandra Morris When her mother suddenly decides to adopt a baby, Jill's life becomes emotionally chaotic. Jill is still reeling from her father's death and is now dealing with a stranger, a pregnant teenager, living in her home. As Jill, Ariadne Meyers gives a powerful performance, evoking her alternating fear, grief, and anger. Mandy, the pregnant teen, abused and on the run, is terrified that Jill's mother will discover her deceptions about the forth- coming baby. With a young, breathy voice, Cassandra Morris perfectly conveys Mandy's emotional naïveté as she struggles to do the best thing for her baby and longs for a loving home like the temporary one she's found. Well-cast dual narration enhances the emotional depths of this story. J.M. Listening Library 10 hrs. Unabridged Young Adult Trade Ed.: DD Library Ed.: CD ISBN 9780307968715 $20.00 ISBN 9780307968722 $60.00 April/May 2012 s 33 PERFECTED BY GIRLS Alfred C. Martino Read by Jen Taylor Martino, author of Pinned, is back on the wrestling circuit, but this time his main character is Melinda Radford, the first girl on the Ashton High School wrestling team. Narrator Jen Taylor is spl endidl y fun a s she introduces Mel's friends and family—and the boys who are reluctant to wrestle her. Martino and Taylor also cap- ture Mel's home life as she deals with her bossy grand- mother, who wants her to work in her office. Taylor's standout characters are the grandmother and a smarmy guy at the office who hilari- ously fakes how happy he is to have Mel working there. Listeners go along for the ride as Mel confronts death and eventually wrestles varsity. S.G.B. Listen & Live Audio 7 hrs. Unabridged Young Adult Trade Ed.: CD (also DD ISBN 9781593165994 $29.95 )

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