Posts Tagged ‘sister’
Posted on August 2nd, 2013 by pajamapress
“Maclean’s novel in verse has a hypnotic rhythm that pulls readers into the mind of 15-year-old Nix. Formerly known as “Fatty Humbolt,” he is struggling with his crush on Loren Cody, the girlfriend of the best player on the hockey team, and his love-hate relationship with his older sister, Roxy. With her “Vampire Red” hair, endless stream of boyfriends, and rebellious energy, Roxy is the polar opposite of Nix, who likes to fade into the background and thinks it’s hard to talk to anyone, let alone members of the opposite sex. Nix finds solace and self-expression in his woodworking. Then Roxy falls for Bryan Sykes, a popular but notorious cad and politician’s son, and Nix is forced to come out of his shell and find his voice. The poems successfully capture the cadences of modern teenage speech and behavior in unadorned language. The sparse verse also provides the perfect narrative voice to express Nix’s taciturn strength. Readers used to a diet of cliché-ridden YA fiction will enjoy this refreshing take on the teenage plight, and, although the ending is particularly painful and poignant, the hard-won hopefulness of Nix’s growth will linger with them long after the poetry ends.”
Posted in Nix Minus One | Tagged book, brother, introvert, jill-maclean, nix-minus-one, Novel, novel-in-verse, Pajama Press, reading, Review, school-library-journal, siblings, sister, slj, teen, verse, verse-novel, woodworking, ya
Posted on July 15th, 2013 by pajamapress
“A dog, beaten and ignored.
A girl, risking and reckless.
A boy who must step out of his safe-place to save them…
I lived in Newfoundland in early grade school (on a now-closed Air Force base), so I have a strong mental picture of the isolated small coastal town that Roxy longs to escape, where Nix’s solitary ways are known to everyone, where a story can never be untold.
Request this novel-in-verse from your local library or independent bookstore; they might have to order it (Pajama Press is a small Canadian firm, not one of the “Big 5″), but it’s so worth waiting for!
Have you ever felt like the only person who could fix a situation?”
Click here to read the full review – but beware of spoilers!
Posted in Nix Minus One | Tagged animal-abuse, books-ya-love, Canada, contemporary, dog, fiction, free-verse, high school, jill-maclean, katy-manck, newfoundland, nix-minus-one, novel-in-verse, parents, Review, sibling, sister, teen, ya
Posted on July 1st, 2013 by pajamapress
“MacLean’s free verse style mirrors 15-year-old protagonist Nix Humbolt’s quiet, unassuming nature: “The first time / I came across the word / introversion / was the first time / I recognized myself. Like, / there was a category / for me.” At the heart of the novel, which is set in a tiny Newfoundland village, is Nix’s complex, push-pull relationship with his older, rebellious sister, Roxy, and the tender bond he forms with a neglected guard dog. To deal with the challenges of both, Nix takes refuge in his father’s woodworking studio, channeling ragged emotions he can’t verbally express into smooth boxes, picture frames, and tables. But when tragedy upends Nix’s life, it takes a special girl named Blue—and a special dog—to help him confront reality. Nix’s immediate first-person narration offers astute observations (“Is an adult just a teenager with a layer of veneer?”), and YAs who are drawn to contemporary fiction and verse novels won’t want to miss this poignant Canadian import.”
— Ann Kelley
Posted in Nix Minus One | Tagged ann-kelley, book, Booklist, Canada, coming-of-age, contemporary, dog, fiction, free-verse, jill-maclean, newfoundland, nix-minus-one, Novel, Review, sister, united-states, us, ya
Posted on June 24th, 2013 by pajamapress
Children’s Book Panel member Ken Setterington appeared on CBC Radio’s The Next Chapter today with co-panel member Michele Landsberg. The two shared their selections for this summer’s reading list. Setterington’s YA choice? Nix Minus One.
“It’s a fast read, just a good family story, but a story about a young man finding out who he really is. A strong book.”
Click here to listen to the full segment. Skip to 11:27 for the full Nix Minus One review.
Posted in Nix Minus One | Tagged book, books, boy, cbc, children's-books, family, fast-read, free-verse, jill-maclean, ken-setterington, nix-minus-one, Novel, Pajama Press, panel, radio, Review, siblings, sister, ya
Posted on June 21st, 2013 by pajamapress
“Hello I am Joshua I am a grade eight student in Barrie. The book I have read is Nix Minus One by Jill MacLean. The reason I read this book is because I think Jill Maclean is a very good author and I have read many of her books and really enjoyed them. This book is a very entertaining book that makes you want to keep reading because you get so caught up in the emotions of some of the characters. The main character Nixon, goes through a couple of the biggest changes in his life. Nixon is a 15 year old guy who isn’t very popular and his sister Roxanne, known as Roxy is falling for one of the most dangerous guys in school. Bryan Sykes is known to be a drug dealer. Nix would do anything for his sister, but when Roxy doesn’t come home from her friend’s party Nix get very worried. Nix only has a couple friends. Chase McCallum and his sister who they call Blue who seem to be everywhere in the book but Blue is mostly in the barrens bird watching. In conclusion I believe that this book is really entertaining for people who enjoy realistic fiction because I really got attached to Nix and his family. I think readers would find some similiarites of this story to their own lifestyle and overall it’s just a good read. I would rate this a 9.5/10.”
—Joshua, Student Reviewer
Posted in Nix Minus One | Tagged book, Canada, contemporary, dog, family, free-verse, jill-maclean, newfoundland, nix-minus-one, Novel, Review, sister, student, teen, ya
Posted on January 11th, 2013 by pajamapress
“…Nix’s story is one of transformation. Nix is an introvert. He finds relationships difficult, and is more at home expressing himself through the things he makes. A connection he does form his to his neighbour’s neglected (and possibly abused) dog, whom he arranges to start walking every day. With Twig, Nix can do what he can’t do for his sister Roxy. Nix knows that Roxy’s relationship is toxic, but she won’t listen to him. The more out of control she becomes, the more desperate he becomes to protect Twig.
What I loved most about this book is the the way that Nix evolves.In the same way that Twig transforms from a sad and frightened animal, Nix transforms from a sad and timid boy into the knight-slaying dragon he wishes he could be. Nix finds strength he didn’t know he possessed- the strength to fight for what matters and protect what he loves no matter how difficult or at how high a cost.
…Both of these books [Nix Minus One and Counting Back from Nine] were impossible to put down, and left me thinking about them long after I finished reading. They are emotionally engaging and thought-provoking, and the verse format asks readers to read between the lines and fill in the blanks. They deal with loss, and secrets, and figuring out who you are, and are highly accessible and appealing teenage reads.”
Click here to read the full review.
Posted in Nix Minus One | Tagged animal-abuse, book, brother, Canada, canlit, dog, fiction, free-verse, introvert, jill-maclean, nix-minus-one, Novel, Pajama Press, pet, rachels-reading-timbits, reading, Review, sister, teen, ya
Posted on January 4th, 2013 by pajamapress
Available February 15, 2013
Novels written in verse are difficult to execute well. On one hand they have a tendency toward melodrama; on the other they showcase poetry’s inherent ability to communicate flashes of thought, emotion, and experience. For YA novels in which the protagonists are often dealing with difficult situations, balance comes from allowing the characters to emerge authentically without forcing their voices to fit the format’s mould. Nix Minus One achieves this balance.
Though he’s now tall and lean, 15-year-old Nix struggles to lose his “Fatty Humbolt” elementary school identity, make friends, and prevent his older sister, Roxy, from self-destructing. Nix keeps to himself, channelling his frustrations into woodworking and caring for Twig, a neighbour’s dog. But when Twig is endangered and Roxy gets wrapped up in a toxic relationship, Nix is forced to fight against his introverted tendencies and stand up for those he loves.
Author Jill MacLean effectively crafts the verse to create Nix’s voice and uses imagery to convey emotion. Nix’s acerbic tone when faced with uncomfortable situations (such as when he receives his report card or when Roxy asks him to install a lock on her door) reveals his struggle to fit in and his frustration over the differences between the person he wishes he could be, the person people expect him to be, and the person he truly is.
While Roxy’s downward spiral feels a little contrived, MacLean tempers this with Nix’s protective feelings toward her. The novel’s strength comes from the authenticity of Nix’s emotional evolution, Twig’s parallel development from a sad and lethargic dog to an active and loveable one, and the complexity of the brother/sister relationship. This is an absorbing, emotionally resonant book.
– Melanie Fishbane, an MFA student at Vermont College of Fine Arts.
Click here to visit the Quill & Quire website
Posted in Nix Minus One | Tagged author, book, brother, contemporary, dog, fiction, free-verse, jill-maclean, melanie-fishbane, newfoundland, nix-minus-one, Novel, Pajama Press, quill-and-quire, reader, Review, sister, teen, ya