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November blues
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Trade Reviews

  Booklist Review

November is the smartest senior in her high school, but after a fumbling night with her boyfriend, Josh, who subsequently died in a freak fraternity accident, she discovers she is pregnant. How can she tell her mother, who shares November's dream of a college scholarship? With her grief and disappointment, November must face grim reality, and she gets some support from girlfriends. She also gets help from classmate Jericho, who blames himself for Josh's death, and part of the story is told from Jericho's viewpoint as he battles his guilt and turmoil. But the real drama is the physical experience of teen pregnancy, and then the real pain of November's premature labor and childbirth. Will the baby live? And what then? Along with the serious issues teens will appreciate the fast, funny contemporary dialogue, laced with kindness and insults (no invective, though), and also the view of the girl who is Mom's perfect princess but screws up big time. Though written as a sequel to The Battle of Jericho (2003), this gripping novel stands alone.--Rochman, Hazel Copyright 2007 Booklist

  Kirkus Review

Sixteen-year-old Josh Prescott dies jumping from a second-story window in a high-school hazing ritual and leaves behind a mess. His girlfriend, November Nelson, is pregnant, his cousin Jericho has lost his best friend and his parents hire a lawyer to try to convince November that they ought to raise their grandchild. November is her mother's "perfect princess," the one who's going to make it, and it's this mother-daughter relationship that is the heart of the novel. With its effective depiction of the difficulties of having a baby--the health issues, the damaged relationship with her mother, the tricky dynamics of school life--this is clearly a cautionary tale about teen pregnancy. Though the dialogue sounds stilted at times, the story is well-plotted, realistic and matter-of-fact, and November and Jericho are well-drawn, likable characters. Though a companion to The Battle of Jericho (2003), this stands well on its own. (Fiction. YA) Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
In this second novel in Sharon M. Draper's Jericho Trilogy and Coretta Scott King Honor Book, Jericho and November are locked together in pain from the past and fear for the future, and it feels as though there's no way to escape either. <br> <br> When November Nelson loses her boyfriend, Josh, to a pledge stunt gone horribly wrong, she thinks her life can't possibly get any worse. But Josh left something behind that will change November's life forever. She's pregnant and now she's faced with the biggest decision of her life. How in the world will she tell her mom? And how will Josh's parents take the news? She's never needed a friend more.<br> <br> Jericho Prescott lost his best friend when he lost his cousin, Josh, and the pain is almost more than he can bear. His world becomes divided into "before" and "after" Josh's death. He finds the only way he can escape the emptiness he feels is to quit doing the things that made him happy when his cousin was alive, such as playing his beloved trumpet. At the same time, he begins playing football, where he hopes the physical pain will suppress the emotional agony. But will hiding behind shoulder pads really help? And will his gridiron obsession prevent him from being there for his cousin's girlfriend when she needs him most?
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