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Fiction Ages 12+
Pages: 128
Themes: drugs, mystery, crime
Publisher: Orca Book Publishers
Pub Date: 01/Oct/2012
Fry Reading Level: 2.9
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Rob wants to be a DJ—more than anything. And when his older brother Adam lands him a gig at a local all-ages club filling in for DJ Sly, Rob is ecstatic. This could be his big break, and when he finds out that the girl of his dreams will be there that first night, it seems like it is all coming together. But things fall apart—Mary Jane overdoses on Ecstasy provided by Adam, and DJ Sly turns Adam in and implicates Rob. The brothers end up on the run, evading the police while trying to force DJ Sly to tell the truth about the brothers' part in the death and Sly's own role in supplying drugs at the club.

Booklist
"Features clean prose, believable characters, current cultural landmarks (especially in the tracks Rob spins), and a powerfully sharp, abrupt ending. Even seemingly innocent choices have consequences, and the path from piano lessons to prison is not as long as many teens think it is. Ross plots that particular course with transparency and without moralizing, offering a story that will resonate well beyond the targeted reluctant readership."
CM Magazine
"A quick paced story, compelling and real. One of the most noteworthy aspects of this book is that it's about making choices, and that, even if you've made a bad choice to start, you can change course and make good ones instead...Highly Recommended."
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"Readers will appreciate the ethical dilemma [Rob] has to struggle with...While short, and simply written, Coming Clean counts as extremely effective literature."
TriState YA Book Review Committee
"Written in crisp prose, with believable characters and up-to-date references, this cross between a short story and short novel will appeal to teens...Presented in a straightforward style without preachiness...Highly recommended for teen readers and especially reluctant readers."

Awards

TriState YA Review Group Book of Note  | 2013 | Commended

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