Kind of sort of fine

Spencer Hall

Book - 2021

Told from two viewpoints, high school seniors Haley, who had a public breakdown, and shy Lewis, long-time member of the TV Production class, find that filming documentaries about their classmates' hidden talents reveals their own aspirations.

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YOUNG ADULT FICTION/Hall Spencer
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Subjects
Genres
Young adult fiction
School fiction
Novels
Published
New York : Atheneum [2021]
Edition
First edition
Language
English
Physical Description
276 pages ; 22 cm
Audience
Ages 12 up.
Grades 10-12.
ISBN
9781534482982
1534482989
9781534482999
1534482997
Main Author
Spencer Hall (author)
Review by School Library Journal Reviews

Gr 9 Up—Hall's first novel leaves readers with a taste of a feel-good coming-of-age teen story that hearkens back to the 1980s teen movies he so often references. Hayley Mills is a high-achieving high school senior looking forward to getting past the mental breakdown she endured last year. Lewis Holbrook is also a senior, but his focus is learning how to become the leading man like so many of his favorite 1980s movies and finally getting the girl of his dreams. When Hayley and Lewis find themselves partnered up in their TV production class, things get off to a rocky start; but their forced alliance eventually gives way to friendship and perhaps something even more. After a series of adventures that include being chased by the cops and playing laser tag, they both find what they were looking for all along, but just not quite in the way they originally planned. Chapters alternate focus on each protagonist, and both main characters provide entertaining dialogue in their respective chapters as readers watch the events unfold through both points of view. Secondary characters could have been developed further, especially in the instance of Lewis's quest to "win over the girl." Overall, the story wraps up in a perfectly neat way you'd expect from feel-good high school story. The main characters are white. VERDICT A good recommendation to teens having trouble dealing with the future after high school, this is a solid addition to any library with an active teen department.—David Roberts, Salem P.L., OH Copyright 2021 School Library Journal.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Told from two viewpoints, high school seniors Haley, who had a public breakdown, and shy Lewis, long-time member of the TV Production class, find that filming documentaries about their classmates' hidden talents reveals their own aspirations.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Partnered up in TV Production class, Hayley Mills and Lewis Holbrook start making mini documentaries of their classmates’ hidden talents, which leads to unexpected popularity and causes them to question who they really are. 20,000 first printing. Simultaneous eBook.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

Senior year changes everything for two teens in this poignant, funny coming-of-age story that looks at what happens when the image everyone has of us no longer matches who we really are.Senior year of high school is full of changes.For Hayley Mills, these changes aren’t exactly welcome. All she wants is for everyone to forget about her very public breakdown and remember her as the overachiever she once was—and who she’s determined to be again. But it’s difficult to be seen as a go-getter when she’s forced into TV Production class with all the slackers like Lewis Holbrook.For Lewis, though, this is going to be his year. After a summer spent binging 80s movies, he’s ready to upgrade from the role of self-described fat, funny sidekick to leading man of his own life—including getting the girl. The only thing standing in his way is, well, himself.When the two are partnered up in class, neither is particularly thrilled. But then they start making mini documentaries about their classmates’ hidden talents, and suddenly Hayley is getting attention for something other than her breakdown, and Lewis isn’t just a background character anymore. It seems like they’re both finally getting what they want—except what happens when who you’ve become isn’t who you really are?