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Fourteen-year-old Simone is having trouble making friends at her new school when her leadership studies class is paired with kindergarten students to mentor throughout the school year. To her surprise,...
Fourteen-year-old Simone is having trouble making friends at her new school when her leadership studies class is paired with kindergarten students to mentor throughout the school year. To her surprise,...
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Description-

  • Fourteen-year-old Simone is having trouble making friends at her new school when her leadership studies class is paired with kindergarten students to mentor throughout the school year. To her surprise, Simone enjoys the Kinderbuddy Project, and she develops a special friendship with her Kinderbuddy, Lily. But as the bond between Simone and her Kinderbuddy grows, she realizes that a crisis is looming in Lily's family. Simone calls upon Aaron, the reluctant heartthrob of the class, for help, and they become key witnesses to events neither of them could have predicted.

About the Author-

  • Karen Spafford-Fitz is the author of several novels for young people, including Unity Club, Vanish and Dog Walker in the Orca Currents series. She lives in Edmonton.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    December 24, 2012
    In this addition to the Orca Currents line, written at a third-grade reading level, eighth-grader Simone and a few of her classmates get involved with their school’s Kinderbuddies program, which helps mentor kindergarten students. Simone hits it off with a girl named Lily, but it quickly becomes clear that Lily’s home life is not what it seems. Spafford-Fitz has constructed a light but tense mystery—readers may well guess where things are going before Simone does—and offers strong, realistic portrayals of both the eighth-grade and kindergarten students, especially Simone, who has trouble making friends her own age but is great with kids. Ages 10–14.

  • School Library Journal

    June 1, 2013

    Gr 6-9-Both hi/lo titles deal with loneliness and isolation in high school and move at a brisk pace, but Vanish is the more successful title. When Danny invents a new persona on the Facebook knockoff site FaceSpace in hopes of increasing his popularity, he has difficulty managing both profiles. With phrases like "hey pal" and "partying is excellent" spoken throughout, the dialogue is unrealistic. Although dishonest online behavior is an important teen issue, it is dealt with in a superficial way here. In Vanish, 14-year-old Simone has just moved to a new school and is having difficulty making friends when, because of a class assignment, she forms a special bond with kindergartener Lily. As they start spending time together, Simone learns more about Lily's suspicious home life and starts to mistrust her divorced, bickering parents. While readers should be able to guess the ending before it arrives, Spafford-Fitz successfully builds the mood as she gradually reveals more about Lily's family.-Carrie Shaurette, Dwight-Englewood School, Englewood, NJ

    Copyright 2013 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Booklist

    March 15, 2013
    Grades 6-9 Fourteen-year-old Simone is having a hard adjustment to her new school. The popular girls aren't exactly welcoming her with open arms, and her friends from her old school seem to have forgotten about her.Through her participation in a program that pairs teens with kindergarteners, Simone finds place and purpose in helping out her buddy, Lily, and a friendship forms quickly between the two. Soon, it becomes apparent that something is not right in Lily's home life, and Simone struggles to understand the dynamics at play between Lily's divorced parents until a dramatic disappearance sends Simone racing to find answers. Teens will identify with Simone's attempts to make new friends in the unfriendly environment of middle school. The closing plot twist is fairly predictable, but younger readers will enjoy the slight mystery, and the rapid narrative in this Orca Currents title will engage reluctant readers.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2013, American Library Association.)

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    Orca Book Publishers
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