13 to Life by Shannon Delany
13 to Life by Shannon Delany
Release Date: June 22, 2010
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Age Group: Young Adult
Interest: Debut Author
Challenge: 2010 Debut Author Challenge
Buy the Book: Amazon|Barnes & Noble
Something strange is stalking the small town of Junction…
When junior Jess Gillmansen gets called out of class by Guidance, she can only presume it’s for one of two reasons. Either they’ve finally figured out who wrote the scathing anti-jock editorial in the school newspaper or they’re hosting yet another intervention for her about her mom. Although far from expecting it, she’s relieved to discover Guidance just wants her to show a new student around—but he comes with issues of his own including a police escort.
The newest member of Junction High, Pietr Rusakova has secrets to hide–secrets that will bring big trouble to the small town of Junction—secrets including dramatic changes he’s undergoing that will surely end his life early.
Summary from GoodReads
Werewolves. I love them.
Things that rocked about this novel…. writing. Descriptive elements where impressive. I’m sorta picky about descriptive elements…. sometimes it’s just way overdone. But Delaney had a nice balance.
Characterization. Characterization was excellent. I may not have liked some of the characters, but they were well developed and three dimensional. There is nothing worse than reading about a flat character.
Did I mention werewolves? The lore about these werewolves was intriguing…. but I felt like we were only given just a little tip of the iceberg. I am genuinely looking forward to hearing more about that aspect of the story. Hoping that we will learn more about it in book two.
Jess was an easy character to identify with. I immediately liked her, although that sorta changed once I got into the novel a little bit more. I mean I understand the need to be selfless…. but Jess takes it to the extreme and it comes across as annoying rather than admirable.
For example… and perhaps this might be a tad bit spoilery… if you want to skip over it.
So Jess likes Pietr… Pietr likes Jess. But! Jess’s best friend… if you want to call her that, likes Pietr too. So, Jess knowing that her friend likes Pietr, tells Piert to date her friend. Even though she knows that Pietr doesn’t like her friend and in fact likes Jess! Are you confused… ? Me too.
BUT! And here is the kicker. She tells him to date her friend because she doesn’t want her friend to be hurt….. yet Jess and Pietr sneak around and make-out whenever possible. Yeah, Jess…. somehow I think that is probably going to hurt your friend more.
Just lost the self-sacrificing act Jess and I would like you so much more!
There also aspect in the novel that seemed like they were just added in there for convenience… like Jess being a reporter for her school newspaper. It mentions that she is a reporter… that she is doing a research paper on these strange animal attacks… that we all know are the werewolves… and then that’s all that is said. It isn’t touched on again, it just seemed a little bit out of place. If Jess has this huge passion for journalism, I would have thought we would have seen more about it.
It felt like this novel was just a set-up to the rest of the series…. I understand that needs to happen at times, but I didn’t feel like I gained any resolution. Sure, it’s revealed that Pietr is, in fact, a werewolf…. but Jess is the only one that didn’t figure that out. The reader knew within the first couple pages. That being said, 13 to Life did intrigue me enough that I will be picking up book two, but I’m just hoping we get more of the story.