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Author: Lubar, David
Publisher: Tom Doherty Associates
Year Published: 2016
ISBN: 9780765316332
Grades: Grades 9 to12

Character Driven

Reviewed by:

Told from the point of view of seventeen-year-old Cliff Sparks, this powerful and hilarious coming-of-age novel will pull on readers’ heartstrings.
Cliff is desperate to find a girlfriend and “come of age.” But he’s never had much luck with girls. So when he falls for Jillian, a new classmate, at first sight, all he can do is worship her from afar. Cliff is also trying to figure out what to do with the rest of his life and things at home are not at happy as Cliff would have readers believe. ┬áTime is running out. Cliff is at the edge, on the verge, dangling-and holding on for dear life.
“Readers will giggle and guffaw at Lubar’s trademark humor, while their heartstrings are tugged and feelings are tied in knots. This exquisitely crafted coming-of-age novel gets down and dirty-and even rebellious-without sacrificing honesty, thoughtfulness, or respect.” –Booklist, starred review
“Readers will relish clever wordplay, fantasies, and a major secret. In a genre full of barely likable teenage protagonists, Cliff is a charmer, and readers will be cheering him on to finally come of age. Cliff is a character driven to fulfill his quest, and readers will be with him every step of the way.” –Kirkus Reviews, starred review
“Filled with wordplay and moments of wry observation and revelation, this contemporary coming-of-age-novel follows the trials of a big-hearted teen who suffers some hard knocks. . . . Cliff’s humorous perspective on his predicaments doesn’t lessen their sharp impact.” –Publishers Weekly, starred review

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