If there’s one thing I love in a YA novel, it’s a spunky main character and that’s exactly what I got when I read Vikki VanSickle’s “Words that start with B“. Prior to entering grade 7, Clarissa has the whole year planned out – she’s got her best friend Benji by her side and she’s verified that their both enrolled in her favorite teacher, Ms. Ross’s, class. Her Mother’s salon business is booming and life couldn’t get any better.
However, things begin to take a drastic turn when she enters Ferndale public school on the first day of grade 7 and Mr. Campbell walks in the door (whom she quickly renames Tony the Tiger). He’s nothing like Ms. Ross, he’s not easy to talk to and he’s got all sorts of weird ideas planned for them, like creating a radio station to broadcast throughout the school, in Clarissa’s words, “Poor Mr. Campbell. Doesn’t he know that no one listens to radio anymore? I almost feel sorry for him”
Words that start with the letter B really start to turn Clarissa’s world upside down… bullies, boys and another B word that is much too hard for her to even put into words. Even though these B words start to change everything, they also have the power to make Clarissa stronger than she’s ever been. Her vibrant and no holds bar attitude is put to the test and you’ll fall more in love with her page after page.
When I first began this novel, I never thought I’d dedicate my whole morning to it, but I did exactly that. It was a charming, witty and a heartfelt story wrapped up in a perfect little package. The obstacles that Clarissa and her friends have to overcome are unfortunately trials and tribulations that some of us have had the unfortunate task to have to deal with in our lives.
There’s another B word that should be mentioned in this post, which is brilliant. If you like YA novels that take you on a journey of growth and maturity, then you’ll love Vikki VanSickle’s debut.
Thanks to my colleague Mike for hooking me up with yet another great read!