Sorta Like A Rock StarAuthor: Matthew Quick
Genre: YA Contemporary, Realistic Fiction
Published: May 1st 2010 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
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Amber Appleton lives in a bus. Ever since her mom's boyfriend kicked them out, Amber, her mom, and her totally loyal dog, Bobby Big Boy (aka Thrice B) have been camped out in the back of Hello Yellow (the school bus her mom drives). Still, Amber, the self-proclaimed princess of hope and girl of unyielding optimism, refuses to sweat the bad stuff. But when a fatal tragedy threatens Amber's optimism--and her way of life, can Amber continue to be the rock star of hope?With an oddball cast of characters, and a heartwarming, inspiring story, this novel unveils a beautifully beaten-up world of laughs, loyalty, and hard-earned hope. The world is Amber's stage, and Amber is, well...she's sorta like a rock star. True? True.
“Life goes on. Whether we choose to enjoy it or not. So you might as well find a way to enjoy the parts you can. You can’t just give up on life, Amber.”
- Old Man Linder
First of all, I like the way it is written, like the author is not writing a novel but just telling a story to a friend. The sentences are way longer than normal, but somehow they don’t sound wrong. The style is unique and spontaneous and I like that.
I love the optimism. I love that despite their poverty, Amber is still a cheerful and bright and generous person. She still tries to help other people even in small ways. She brings smiles and kindness to them even though her own life is not all rainbows and ponies. Amber inspires a lot of people – old people, people who do not even speak English fluently, people who are labeled freaks and losers, people she doesn’t even know. She doesn’t curse, doesn’t speak bad words, and is a good Catholic girl. Wow, I really like this girl. Too good to be true? Not quite.
Life is never fair. Being a good person doesn’t guarantee that bad things won’t happen to you. Amber is a living proof of that. Horrible things happened to her. She lost faith, hope and the desire to continue living. She turned her back on friends and people who wanted to help her. And that is perfectly understandable. I cannot blame Amber for how she reacted to the things that happened. Grief changes us the way nothing can ever do. But even when Amber hit rock bottom, her friends were there to lift her up and help her rediscover herself. She’s very lucky to be surrounded by friends who did not get tired of her, eventhough she pushed them away. In the end, their patience paid off. For me, that’s the best thing about this book: the part wherein Amber picks herself up and emerges as a stronger version of the Amber that people know and love. She finds hope again and is determined to hold on to it and never lose it again.
SORTA LIKE A ROCK STAR is a very good read. Heartwarming and funny and clever and hopeful. It’s definitely a must-read.