Friday, June 25, 2010

Review: 13 to Life by Shannon Delany

13 to Life
Author: Shannon Delany
Publication: St. Martin's Griffin; 1 edition (June 22, 2010)

Description: Everything about Jessie Gillmansen’s life changed when her mother died. Now even her hometown of Junction is changing.  Mysterious dark things are happening. All Jessie wants is to avoid more change. But showing a hot new guy around Junction High, she’s about to discover a whole new type of change. Pietr Rusakova is more than good looks and a fascinating accent—he’s a guy with a dangerous secret. And his very existence is sure to bring big trouble to Jessie’s small town.  It seems change is the one thing Jessie can’t avoid…

My Thoughts: Jessie is keeping it together after her mother's death even though she relives the accident in nightmares frequently. She has even befriended Sarah, the mean girl who caused the accident and lost her memory in the crash. She isn't attracted to the new boy at first. She is too busy crushing on the cute guy on the football team. In fact, she pushes Pietr toward Sarah. He is attracted to her though. He rides the school bus with her, takes advantage of the fact that she has been appointed his guide to the new school, and gets a job at her farm doing chores. He finds all kinds of opportunities to be around her. It isn't long before she is attracted. And is even more attracted when she finds out that he has lost his parents too.

Meanwhile, she is collecting clippings and doing research about a strange incident in a nearby town. People think there was a werewolf attack and they know the Russian mafia is showing up. Jessie thinks she sees some sort of strange animal around her farm. And Peter's guardian is involved some way with Russians who seem awfully shady.

This was a great story. I liked the way the werewolf myth was handled. I thought both Jessie and Pietr were well-written characters. I liked both of them. Now, I'm not so sure about Sarah. I'm afraid she is changing back to her mean girl ways. I look forward to reading the sequels and learning more about the characters and the world.  

The book has a website.

I recommend this book to middle graders and YAs and all who love werewolves. I couldn't put it down. The story grabbed me and didn't let me go until I had finished the book. 

Challenges: RYOB Reading Challenge, 2010 YA Debut Author Challenge, 2010 YA Reading Challenge


  1. This sounds fantastic! I thought it looked interesting so I added it to my TBR list some time ago but your review really gives me a better idea of what the book is about and now I can't wait to read this.

  2. Nice review - I wanted to buy this one in New York and they were out of it in the two book stores I was able to get to. Still looking forward to it!

  3. I'm not really into werewolves, but this one I think I'll enjoy! It's already on my wishlist! Thanks for the great review!

  4. After reading Shiver and The Dark Divine, I've been sorta into werewolves. This sounds so great. I've read positive reviews on this. Great review!


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