Teenie by Christopher Grant
Martine, known as Teenie to her friends and family, has been a hardworking student for as long as anyone can remember. As a freshman at the technical high school in Brooklyn, she’s hoping to win a scholarship to pay for her to study in Spain for part of the next school year. Her best friend since forever, Cherise, isn’t such a stellar student, but she’s much more socially adept, so she and Teenie complement each other perfectly. When Cherise convinces Teenie to wear a body-hugging outfit forbidden by her strict Caribbean parents, the book smart girl starts getting attention from the star of the basketball team. At the same time,Cherise has been having an online romance with a sugar daddy who keeps sending her gifts and now wants to meet her at Penn Station. Teenie is sure this is some guy is some type of pervert stalker, and finally tells her father about the meeting. When he interrupts the rendezvous with the sugar daddy who is indeed old enough to be their dad, Cherise disowns Teenie for her meddling. Now, Cherise isn’t around to give Teenie advice when her basketball star crush starts asking for favors she doesn’t understand.
I really enjoyed this book, the writer’s first. Grant’s main characters are fleshed out and his dialogue realistic, making the story engaging and fun. I also liked Teenie’s strong sense of family with her parents and older twin brothers. Grant contrasts this nicely with Cherise’s mom, who spends most of her time with her boyfriends, neglecting her daughter.
I recommend this book to all teen readers, especially fans of urban drama. I promise that you will get caught up in Teenie’s problems, which are so typical for today’s teens.