Monday, February 17, 2014

Book Review: Living With Jackie Chan by Jo Knowles

Josh is going to live with his Uncle Larry for his senior year. Story is he wants to work on improving his grades, and take advantage of the architecture program at the school his uncle lives by, but deep down Josh is just running away. Josh doesn't want to have an awesome senior year with his friends, going to the same parties and running into the same girls. He just wants to be done, and be able to get away from everything.

Larry is just as crazy as Josh remembers. A Karate teacher at the local YMCA, Larry lives and breathes positive thinking. He drags Josh to his classes, and forces him to interact with others. Including Stella, his upstairs neighbor who may be his friend. Josh doesn't really want to make friends, but Stella is different. When they work together in Karate, he feels something. It's too bad her super jealous boyfriend sees Josh as a threat instead of a friend.

Josh just wants to get through "this" and on to the next thing, he wants to escape last year, what he did and who he may have hurt in the process. However, as much as he wants to move forward the past still haunts him, and thanks to an upstairs neighbor with a baby he is haunted by the very mistakes he is trying to escape.

If you read Jumping off Swings, you know what Josh is running away from, however you don't need to read it to really get Living With Jackie Chan. Josh has a pretty cool uncle who is just there for him, not pushing and not forcing him to open up even if he knows it is for the best. Stella is a nice girl who also is looking for the wrong kind of love, and while this is not a happy romance book, it really looks at the kinds of relationships we have with others.

If you are looking for a book that packs an emotional punch, look no further than Living With Jackie Chan.

I'll see you @ the library
Katie (Now reading Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan)

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