Sunday, March 5, 2017

Walking and Listening to "Nothing But Trouble"

Nothing But Trouble  by Jacqueline Davies
Harper Audio
6 hours, 17 minutes
ISBN: 9780062369888

Narrated by Brittney Pressley

The first day of school is one that the middle schoolers in Odawahaka will never forget. They arrive to find their lockers filled with tennis balls, toy race cars zipping through the halls, and balloons falling from the ceiling with cheese and messages attached saying "Roar!" Maggie sits back and watches all that is going on, feeling quite proud of the hack she has pulled off. Maggie is following in her father's footsteps, who has passed away before she was born, and using his hackers notebooks to pull of the hacks. Maggie has always worked alone, but that changes when she meets Lena. New to Odawahaka, Lena quickly (way too quickly and assertive for me) inserts herself into Maggie's life and joins in on the hacks. Each of the hacks is being attributed to "the mouse," but will the girls take their hacks too far?

I enjoyed Brittney Pressley's narration. She kept the story moving along, had distinct character voices and I enjoyed the shear "over it" voice she used for Mrs. Dornbusch

I was super excited to read this book since I enjoyed The Lemonade War series by Jacqueline Davies. I loved the hacks/pranks that Maggie and Lena pulled off and the thought, planning and problem solving that were behind them. I loved that the whole town was hooked on a sugary drink called Moxie. But I felt that there were certain issues in the book that were skirted over and that kids would have benefitted from having these issues really explored and brought into the spotlight. One of those issues is changing friendships and how friends who were once by your side are no longer there and the feelings associated with that. Another is Maggie's mother drinking problem and Lena's mother's absence. While both are hinted at, I felt that they were really discussed. 
Will kids really notice that these issues aren't really delved into? No. 
Is this going to stop me from recommending the book to kids? Absolutely not. 
It just feels like a missed opportunity.

I took this photo as I walking and listening.

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