Monday, September 27, 2010





Being a recent convert to YA books I began to notice a lot of  Ellen's books in the YA section. Their distinctive covers really stand out . Crank is the first in a trilogy  about gifted high school junior Kristina Snow. She is a quiet girl, a good student. On a court ordered visit to see her father his disordered lifestyle and a young boy named Adam allow a part of Kristina to stir and awaken:
"Her tongue curled
easily beneath my teeth,
and her words melted
between my lips"
" 'My friends call me Bree'"
That is the start. Kristina embraces  a recklessness. A darkness inside her self that is separate and stronger than the simple safe life and love she has at home.
Bree is limitless. Bree doesn't care about Adam's possible girlfriend. It is Bree that steals heated kisses with Adam, Bree who takes the small mirror and sawed off straw and takes a ride with the Monster.
There were two parts of this book that stuck with me, cemented to me the importance of this book:
"I mean there I was,
snorting crank
with my dad,
my boyfriend,
 and his other
This scene where her father joins her in drug use, doesn't stop her. Even the part of Bree that is still Kristina notices the oddity of it, but she succumbs because of her inner desire too and the allowance of her father. There isn't nearly enough focus on the effect addicted parents play on a child's future. It is disturbing and uncomfortable to witness the remainder of Kristina's trip with her father. You wonder if she will get on the plane to go home, will she fight to stay with her dad and Adam. She doesn't she goes home and surrounded by the love of her family and the Crank clearing out of her system.
The second scene is when Kristina debates her future choices. It is obvious at this stage of the Novel that Bree is a persona. Yes in the midst of Crank she is in control but it is Kristina that flips the switch:
"I mean, who wants to trudge through life, doing everything just right? Taking no chances means wasting your dreams.  How can I explain purposely setting foot on a path so blatantly treacherous? Was the fun in the fall?"
It is here I felt  a profound sense of loss and understanding for Bree. She has chosen. Everything that follows is a fallout of that choice.  This novel is told in poetic and journal format. The page layouts simulate Bree's moods and situations. There is an intimacy to these entries.
This series has been embraced by teens and parents. Ellen explains on her sight how it had a definite word of mouth success. Teens passing it to teens, Parents reading and discovering its beauty. Of course it has been challenged. The profanity and start portrayal of Rape and Drug use has offended many. Ellen talks a lot about this on her site:
This book is a difficult and important read. I'm giving away ONE COPY OF CRANK (slightly loved)



Ashley said...

Enter me please!


Also don't forget to check out my amazing giveaways located at the top of my blog posts.

Ashley's Bookshelf

M.A.D. said...

Mary D
zenrei57 (at) hotmail (dot) com

This book sounds ah-ma-zing lol
Seriously, I'd love to read it and thanks so much for the nice giveaway :)

Onge said...

Thanks for the awesome giveaway!! I've heard good things about this book. I've been wanting to read them for a while now.

Sophia said...

Thanks for the giveaway! Crank sounds REALLY good :)

sophiayunjin @ gmail . com

Jenna said...

This one looks great! Thanks for the contest.


Jenna said...

This one looks great! Thanks for the contest.


The1stdaughter said...

Oddly enough, I have Fallout for review coming up soon, but I've never read Crank or Glass. Her writing is amazing and so powerful! Fantastic review and giveaway, thank you so much for bringing these books to the attention of so many.

I'd love to win a copy of Crank!
the1stdaughter at gmail dot com

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Inspired Kathy said...

I've not read any of Ellen Hopkins books. Please enter me.
bkhabel at gmail dot com

Lisa_Gibson said...

Ooo, please enter me. I've been meaning to read Ellen Hopkins and haven't yet.
Lisa ~ YA Literature Lover

Tore said...

Please enter me in contest. I would love to read this book.

arceli said...

I haven't read these books, but they sound really good. Please enter me.


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