January 29, 2010

Uniqeness Is.

What's in a Name? by Ellen Wittlinger
Reviewed by Joie

A quiet, sheltered suburb along the coast of Folly Bay. Seems peaceful, but that is hardly ever the case. Calm winds, high waves, and the final chapters of some high school lives are about to be plunged into confusion. The town, split apart, by the anxiety of war. And the teenagers, vying for love, attention, and friendship. But as the town falls into battlefield, these ten teenagers begin to think, who are they really?

Stereotype. It's found everywhere, in everyone. Someone could, literally, walk down the street and start stereotyping the first people they see. The kids in the accelerated program are geeks. The guys wearing hoodies all the time are gangster. Yet in this story, What's in a Name, these teenagers realize that the stereotypes in their school makes them need to struggle for true identity. Most adults never realize how much agony some teens go through, thinking about: who are they? Expertly written, deep, and profound, What's in a Name has viewpoints all around and will change the way you see those kids with calculators or those guys shooting hoops. You will begin to see them as having unique identities, not classified like bugs.

I particularly enjoyed this book because, although not everything applied directly to my life as a teenager, I could feel similarities with how their school was organized and how their social ladder worked. It broadened my mind, as I felt more and more empathy for more people in school and how they must have their own problems as well. Ellen Wittlinger was extremely talented when bringing the stories of the ten teens into one story, the story of Scrub Harbor's seniors. I would recommend it to anyone who is or once was a teenager. One mustn't have too much of a judgmental mind to read this though. The whole point is to keep your mind open and to figure out, through each of these teenagers, What's in a Name.

Posted by at January 29, 2010 02:14 PM
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