Author: Susane Colasanti
Publisher: Viking Juvenile
Publication Date: May 31, 2012
Source: e-galley from publisher via NetGalley
About the Book: A romantic and empowering book about bullying
Noelle's life is all about survival. Even her best friend doesn't know how much she gets bullied, or the ways her mom neglects her. Noelle's kept so much about her life a secret for so long that when her longtime crush Julian Porter starts paying attention to her, she's terrified. Surely it's safer to stay hidden than to risk the pain of a broken heart. But when the antagonism of her classmates takes a dramatic turn, Noelle realizes it's time to stand up for herself--and for the love that keeps her holding on.
My Thoughts: This is a book I will definitely be buying for my middle school library. I think my students will love the romance and the high school setting. I love that they'll be getting a look at bullying from the perspective of a teen living through it.
Keep Holding On is told from Noelle's perspective. We don't get a whole lot of detail about the past. Also, we don't see every second of every day. Instead it's really more of glimpses of what Noelle is thinking about and going through at the time. When things from the past affect her in the moment we learn more about them. I think this will keep my students interested. They are very "in the moment" as well :)
Noelle is dealing with so many issues... bullying, self image, and parental neglect to name a few. It was a lot to take in but I felt it was handled in such a way that it won't overwhelm the readers. I can see many of my students identifying with different aspects of what Noelle is going through. Noelle grows and become stronger throughout the story. This is something I like for my students to see.
Keep Holding On is a great read for any teen, whether or not they are dealing with bullying. I know I'll be recommending it like crazy once it arrives for my middle school library.