Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Panic by Sharon Draper

Justin is the only male dancer at the local dance studio and he loves to partner with Layla.  Layla is a beautiful, but insecure, dancer who has a hot, possessive boyfriend and is missing her dad who has been incarcerated for six years.  Mercedes is usually hanging out with Layla and Diamond when they’re not dancing.  Diamond and Mercedes drop by the mall to run an errand, and while Mercedes is making a purchase, Diamond disappears.  Was she kidnapped by the handsome man she left the building with?  Draper’s newest novel alternates between these four high school protagonists and their perspectives as Diamond’s disappearance affects their lives and their community.  Themes of online safety, stranger danger, domestic violence, and the social lives of adolescents make this title a strong pick for a girls’ book club (8th grade and up).  Former English teacher Draper thoughtfully provides discussion questions and possible essay assignments on her website.  --Jessica Fenster-Sparber

Draper, Sharon.  Panic.  New York: Atheneum, 2013.  Print.

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