Saturday, August 16, 2008
MIDDLE ROW by Sylvia Olsen
The cover pic should be enough to interest most YA readers, however, adults, don't panic, the subject matter is quite tame.
Vince and Raedawn have been riding the same bus to school their entire lives. There is a social seating heirarchy involved in most bus riding, and theirs is no exception. There are the back seat riders - usually the cool kids, and the front seat riders - usually the less secure or nerdy type. The middle rows can be easily ignored and that is just the problem when Dune suddenly stops riding the bus. There are only two people who even notice that the quiet, loner has not gotten on the bus since the first day of school, and they also seem to be the only ones concerned.
Raedawn convinces Vince that something needs to be done. They start asking questions - the bus driver, the school counselor, and then the administration. No one knows anything and the tendency is to brush the whole issue under the rug. Finally Raedawn enlists the help of her Uncle Dave, and long hidden secrets begin to emerge.
MIDDLE ROW provides a mystery that unfolds at a fast pace in this 100 page book. Readers will easily become intrigued by the missing Dune, as well as the personal stories connected to Vince, Raedawn, and Uncle Dave. An added criminal element also helps hold the attention of most readers.