Things Hoped For

Publisher
Age Range
10+
ISBN
039924350X
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Andrew Clements
Overall rating
 
2.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style
 
2.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by jenna

Things Hoped For is a  book written by Andrew Clements. It is a heartwarming story about a girl who lives with her grandfather. She plays the violin and finds that she has stage fright, and she has a very very important audition for a college scholarship to a brand new advanced musical, she was chosen just to audition from almost 1,000 kids!!  Then she meets another guy, who plays the saxaphone, after her grandfather leaves for unknown  buissness, she will soon find the true glory of music.

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Gotta Love Gwen
Overall rating
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by MssJos

Gwen is originally from a small town in West Viriginia but now lives in New York City with her Grandfather where she attending music school. Gwen plays the violin with amazing devotion and is trying desperately to focus on her music to prepare for her college auditions at the top music school in New York (one being Juilliard), but some major interruptions prevent her from being able to do this.

For instance, she runs into Robert (yes, Bobby from Things Not Seen) who is in NYC preparing for his own music school auditions. Gwen has typically been so busy with her music that she hasn't made any time for friends, boyfriends, or even casual acquaintances. After just one trip to a jazz concert, Robert and Gwen's lives are linked to each other in ways neither of them had prepared for.

Gwen's grandfather has disappeared, leaving her alone to face her angry great uncle Hank who has been harassing her grandfather a lot lately. Not to mention the strange man she and Robert encounter while shopping one day who is unpredictable and somewhat terrifying. This would be too much to handle for some 17-year-old girls, but Gwen is "The Brave One," the one who left West Virginia to pursue her music career in the most exciting city in America. Through the ups and downs of the novel, Gwen remains extremely level-headed and practical, pretty impressive considering the stress she is under. With Robert, Gwen learns about the true meaning of friendship, family, and her own inner strength. Clements gives Gwen some impressive qualities, such as her Christianity that shines through, and some quotable quotes such as:


"I have my own story, and I love my story, but I know I can't tell it alone, not
now. Because stories have centers, but they don't have edges. No boundaries. And
I needed to learn that."
Overall, I enjoyed Things Hoped For much more than I thought I would. There were a few things that were a little too neat and tidy, and Clements' teenagers are some of the most responsible, well-behaved, non-hormonal teenagers I have ever read about, but I think that's why I like them.
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