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Carter Finally Gets It (2009)CarterFinally_paperback cover_2

From Booklist

Crawford expertly channels his inner 14-year-old for this pitch-perfect comedy about girls, football, girls, swimming, girls, drama club, and girls. Freshman Will Carter is googly-eyed over everything about high school (did we mention the girls?), and his ADD just makes it worse—no matter what’s going on, it only takes seconds for his imagination to devolve into fantasies about G-strings, exposed navels, and “tig ol’ biddies.” His toughest challenges quickly reveal themselves: gynormous athletes wanting to flatten him, friends intent on humiliating him, and Abby, the no-longer-fat drill-team hottie who seems to get a real charge out of slapping him in public. There’s barely a plot to speak of, and Crawford relies heavily on stock social situations. But his stream-of-consciousness, first-person narrative flails around in an excellent imitation of a freshman, complete with volume changes, dumb jokes, and sudden flashes of elation and despair. Occasionally poignant and frequently hilarious, this will amuse scads of male readers. Grades 7-10. –Daniel Kraus

big breakCarter’s Big Break (2010)

From Booklist

Though far less plausible than Carter Finally Gets It (2009), this similarly excitable and hormone-addled sequel is every bit as hilarious. A movie production has moved into town, and Carter somehow snags the lead role opposite tween sensation Hilary Idaho. This doesn’t sit well with pissed-off girlfriend Abby or his posse of buds, but hey—at least Carter gets a chance to stare at his favorite obsession: “tig ol’ bitties.” Carter is a fantastic character: goofily optimistic, perennial weepy, yet determined to be a playa—hard to do when your favorite exclamation is “Dang it!” Let’s hope Crawford keeps ‘em coming. Grades 7-10. –Daniel Kraus

 

 

Carter’s Unfocused, One-Track Mind (2012)Carter's Unfocused

VOYA – Beth E. Andersen

“Will Carter, fifteen, an athletic and gifted actor who is wildly, yet sweetly, horny, funny, and insecure, is now a sophomore at Merrian High. He and his equally goofy posse of devoted “boys” are involved in many of the same hi-jinks that saw them all through the first two entries in this series (Carter Finally Gets It [Hyperion, 2009], and Carter’s Big Break [Hyperion, 2010/Voya June 2010]). Hormones and bloodletting rule the day. They participate in a fight club, improving dramatically when a fellow thespian, who is grateful for Carter’s defense of his sexual orientation, shares some of his martial arts secrets. Carter renews wooing gorgeous Abby, who is on her way to the prestigious New York Drama School and wants Carter to come with her, a slim possibility due to his wretched grades. There is also the matter of the murderous Scary Terry, from the first book in the series, who seems determined to break every bone in Carter’s body. By turns laugh-out-loud hilarious, groan-out-loud gross, and head-shakingly appalling due to the utter lack of responsibility in some of the actions (binge drinking, unprotected sex, and oh yes, a near-forest fire), Crawford nevertheless adds an appealing level of self-examination and tender insight into Carter’s unexpectedly courageous efforts to turn his life around. Crawford nails his intended audience’s world with a book that will make parents cringe, even as they will be surprised by the decency of the adults portrayed in Carter’s world. Ages 12 to 18.”