RACHEL SPINELLI PUNCHED ME IN THE FACE
By Paul Acampora
176 page -Ages 9+
Published by Roaring Brook Press on August 30, 2011
16 year-old Zach has deal with not only moving across the country from Colorado to a small town in Connecticut, but also his mother leaving him and his father. They move in next door to a family with a grouchy teen-age girl named Rachel Spinelli. Rachel gets into a lot of fights because she is protective of her brother, Teddy. Teddy is also 16 and he has a mental disability. Rachel asks Zach and his Dad to watch out for Teddy to make sure he is OK. Teddy plays the trumpet really well and he helps Zach learn to play better. Over time Zach becomes friends with Teddy, gets a crush on Rachel and starts to really feel at home in Falls Connecticut.
OH, Rachel Spinelli really does punch him in the face, but I won’t tell you why! OK I’ll give you a hint, it involves a squirrel.
This isn’t the usual action / adventure story I usually really get into. It’s a story about a high school kids life, but it is a VERY good story! I like how it gets funny when there are serious topics (like Zach’s mother leaving or Teddy’s disability). I usually don’t like romance stuff in stories but this really wasn’t over the top. I found that I really cared about Zach and wanted him to have a nice life. Some of the topics in the book might not be good for younger advanced readers because they are kind of sad (I’d say 9+ ages). I am definitely keeping this book in my library and will read it again! In summary I say – HEY KIDS put down the Harry Potter books and try a different kind of story!
To learn more about Mr. Acampora and his books you can visit his website by clicking HERE.