March 04, 2009

Marching Off the Deep End

After meeting band geek goddess Ellie Snow, you might think that she's got everything under control. She's always been a force of nature in her marching band, and she's always known what she's wanted -- to choose the music and direct the crisp notes of her own marching band. Ellie's a senior planning to go to the state university near her home. Everything's perfect. Her boyfriend Connor, a sophomore in high school, will be right close by. She won't have time to miss her parents. Nothing in Ellie's life will change from the way she likes it.

Somehow, her parents don't think this is a great idea. Under protest, Ellie visits her mother's alma mater, an East Coast women's college which she expects to be just a bunch of snobs -- and finds herself seduced by the idea of hipness and belonging to someplace cool. She realizes that a little change just might do her good. Maybe she really is Band Geeked Out, and done with the whole thing...

This second installment of the trials and fun of a band geek girl has some unexpected twists, and we see the world more fully through Ellie's eyes. Connor's not as mature -- and sometimes Ellie seems to resent him for being who he is, showing her own immaturity. Ellie sees herself falling into behaviors which she acknowledges as increasingly badly thought out and hurtful, yet allows herself to do so, rationalizing that she's trying out something new -- something not boring and predictable. The novel's conflict is presented somewhat simplistically, but it's clear that Ellie's new needs and desires are part of the growing up experience. The ending may surprise some readers, but many will cheer as the band geek marches forward into her newest formation.

Buy this book from an independent bookstore near you! COMING APRIL 2009


Ethel Rohan said...

Another great review. I envy how well you summarize, critique, and entice us to read these wonderful books. Oh to have my own book that you could do all that for ... someday :-)

a. fortis said...

Sounds like a fun follow-up! I enjoyed the first one.