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Hello, little metal box. Welcome to my world.
Sky thinks filming her sixteenth summer for a school project will end up being a lame home video, rated G for everyone. She's wrong. Her video diary is about to record her family coming unglued. Her mom, Barbie, has hired men to secretly build the "basics" to keep the family safe. "Basics," as in bomb shelter. Didn't people stop building those years ago? "I prefer the term fallout shelter," her mom says. Word choice is everything, isn't it?
Once the shelter has satisfied Barbie's desperate craving for safety, she turns a blind eye to the fallout as Sky and her twin brother, Will, find dark places inside themselves, giving into their underground temptations. (This is your brain. This is your brain on drugs.) Before long, Sky starts to realize that the shelter poses a bigger threat to her family than the world outside ever did. Shelter is anywhere but there.
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Benette Whitmore is a member of the duck 'n cover generation, and she remembers having disaster drills in her elementary school. Through it all, she was always fascinated by bomb shelters and the secrecy about them. She says, "I'm not sure if people were so secretive because it revealed a paranoia that no one wanted to admit, or if they just didn't want the neighbors showing up and expecting to be protected, too, while hogging all the bottled water and canned goods!" Benette teaches writing at SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry and Syracuse University. She lives in central New York with her two children and two little white dogs. This is her first novel. Visit her Web site at www.benettewhitmore.com.Review:
Determined to keep her family safe, Sky's mother announces her plans to build a bomb shelter in their backyard. Little does she know that the dangers facing Sky and her twin brother Will are not going to be falling out of the sky, but may be found in the one place that she wanted to be a safe haven for all of them. Sky thinks filming her life for the summer will result in a few minutes of boring footage, but Will's destructive habits and her crush on his best friend make her art project more real that she could have imagined. While the premise of a single mom attempting to relate to and protect her teenage children is familiar, the quirky humor keeps it from being stale. The narrative is constructed around the film project, complete with prompts for sound effects. -- Kirkus Reviews (October, 2006)
Shelter's screenplay set-up quickly draws readers in to explore the powerful and mystifying bond between twins. When Sky's teacher talks her into making a video diary over her 16th summer, Sky doesn't expect to be chronicling her family's disintegration. The stage is set when Sky and her brother realize that the backyard shelter is the perfect place for their summer exploits. Sky's authentic, sardonic voice-overs smoothly navigate through the minefield of adolescent angst and create an engrossing video time capsule. -- Children's Frontlist (October, 2006)
This commendable debut novel features a likeable narrator who survives a summer filled with adolescent rites of passage. -- VOYA (Voice of Youth Advocates) (October, 2006)
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Book Description Walker Books for Young Readers, 2006. Hardcover. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # SONG080278884X
Book Description Walker Childrens, 2006. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M080278884X