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Teen Review: Chain Reaction by Simone Elkeles

My name is Jenna. I go to a high school where I’m part of the marching band and the cheerleading squad. I’m pretty busy, but I always find time to read. I’m also very creative and I like doing little crafts out of random things I find.

Chain Reaction by Simone ElkelesChain Reaction by Simone Elkeles

Already a lover of the Perfect Chemistry novels, I knew I would love this conclusion to the trilogy. Keep in mind that you could understand the plot of Chain Reaction without reading the first two novels.

Luis Fuentes comes from a family of gang members. His two older brothers, Alex and Carlos, were both involved in the Latino Blood, but the LB is a Chicago gang and Luis now lives in Colorado for the sole reason of avoiding the gang. Luis thought he was safe, but when his mother forces him to move back to Chicago, Luis knows that involvement in the gang is inevitable, despite his family’s protests and his new girlfriend, Nikki’s, love.

This novel is told between two perspectives, Luis’ and Nikki’s, and readers will experience unexpected surprises in both of these young people’s lives. Nikki is falling in love again and Luis discovers the true reason why it seems he has a deep connection with the Latino Blood. The climax of this book will shock everybody. Also, if you were a reader of the previous novels, the epilogue to this book will satisfy and give closure.

If you like a forbidden love story and acceptance of others and yourself, Chain Reaction by Simone Elkeles is the novel for you.

Teen Review: After by Amy Efaw

My name is Jenna. I go to a high school where I’m part of the marching band and the cheerleading squad. I’m pretty busy, but I always find time to read. I’m also very creative and I like doing little crafts out of random things I find.

After by Amy Efaw

As a reader, this novel will challenge your beliefs and your character. It has the ability to make you think twice about the kind of person you are.

After by Amy Efaw is about a girl named Devon Davenport who seemed to be perfect. She was a class A babysitter, had a 4.0 grade point average, and had insane soccer abilities that would soon take her to the Olympics. Meanwhile, Devon was holding a very big secret. She was pregnant.

Or was she holding a secret? Devon claims that she had no clue that she was pregnant. She did not recognize the symptoms and she was essentially clueless to what was going on in her body. When the baby was born, Devon stuffed the baby into a trash bag and threw the bag into a trash can outside of her apartment.

Now, Devon is in a juvenile court system, being charged with multiple offenses, but the most severe is murder.

This novel is similar to a mystery novel. Readers do not know if Devon is telling the truth or not about being oblivious to the pregnancy. Personally, there were moments in the novel that I wanted Devon to be innocent and I was rooting for her, but when you take a step back, you remember the ugly and horrific act she committed and then wonder how you could support her.

This heartbreaking novel has so many different layers that are explored from cover to cover and it is almost impossible to put down.

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