Monday, February 8, 2016
We Are All Made of Molecules
Ashley is at the top of the social ladder. She got there by being pretty and mean. She's puts all her effort into looking good and belittling her friends, and almost none into her grades. She is mortified when her mother's boyfriend and his geeky son move in. To make matters worse, she hasn't told anyone why her parents got divorced. What would having a gay father do to her social standing?
Things start out OK for Stewart until gym class. That's where he meets Jared who is big, mean, popular, and athletic. Jared seems to have made it his mission in life to squash Stewart like a bug. Ashley also happens to have a crush on the totally handsome Jared and willing to forgive just about any personality flaw to make a relationship work.
Susin Nielsen's book is by turns funny and heartbreaking. It's definitely a compelling read, and Stewart's unusual take on the world is endearing and entertaining. My struggle is with Ashley. She is not really likable at all. She's mean to everyone, and it's challenging to feel sympathy for her.
Additionally, Stewart is very innocent for his age, but the book also contains profanity and attempted sexual assault. It makes it difficult to place. Grades 8 and up.