Search This Blog

Love reading challenges? Check out my other blog:

2022 Literary Escapes Challenge

- Alabama (1)
- Alaska (1)
- Arizona (1)
- Arkansas
- California (5)
- Colorado (3)
- Connecticut (1)
- Delaware
- Florida
- Georgia (2)
- Hawaii (1)
- Idaho
- Illinois (2)
- Indiana (1)
- Iowa (1)
- Kansas
- Kentucky
- Louisiana
- Maine (1)
- Maryland (2)
- Massachusetts (5)
- Michigan (2)
- Minnesota (1)
- Mississippi (1)
- Missouri
- Montana
- Nebraska (1)
- Nevada
- New Hampshire (1)
- New Jersey (1)
- New Mexico (1)
- New York (9)
- North Carolina (4)
- North Dakota
- Ohio (1)
- Oklahoma
- Oregon (1)
- Pennsylvania (2)
- Rhode Island (1)
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- Tennessee (1)
- Texas (2)
- Utah (2)
- Vermont (3)
- Virginia (1)
- Washington (4)
- West Virginia
- Wisconsin (1)
- Wyoming (1)
- Washington, D.C.* (1)


Antarctica (1)
Australia (2)
Egypt (2)
England (15)
France (1)
Greece (1)
Ireland (2)
Italy (1)
Malaysia (1)
Nepal (1)
Poland (1)
Portugal (1)
Romania (1)
Scotland (3)
Sweden (1)
Wales (1)

My Progress:

36 / 51 states. 71% done!

2022 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

My Progress:

19 / 50 books. 38% done!

2022 Craving for Cozies Reading Challenge

My Progress:

20 / 25 books. 80% done!

2022 Cloak and Dagger Reading Challenge

My Progress:

65 / 53 books. 123% done!

Booklist Queen's 2022 Reading Challenge

My Progress:

43 / 52 books. 83% done!

Aussie Author Reading Challenge 2022

1 / 24 books. 4% done!

2022 Nonfiction Reader Challenge

3 / 20 books. 15% done!

2022 POPSUGAR Reading Challenge

My Progress:

36 / 50 books. 72% done!

The 52 Book Club's Reading Challenge 2022

The 52 Book Club's Reading Challenge 2022

My Progress:

39 / 52 books. 75% done!

2022 Build Your Library Reading Challenge

My Progress:

38 / 40 books. 95% done!

2022 Support Book Bloggers Challenge

2022 Medical Examiner's Mystery Reading Challenge

Saturday, January 02, 2010

Bad Apple Better Left On The Tree

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

"I walk down the hall, feeling the weight of eyes. I've always felt the weight of eyes, but now they're heavier, like I'm wearing a lead dress."
- Tola Riley, Bad Apple, p. 14
Tola Riley knows how to stand out from the crowd. With her cropped green hair, nose ring, wild punk outfits, and a reputation for doing/saying/painting anything she cares to, she's definitely marching to the beat of her own drummer. All kinds of stories are circulating about her - some true, some not - and she couldn't care less. Until rumors start flying about her and her favorite teacher, Mr. Mymer. Suddenly, she cares. A lot. Mr. Mymer's the only one on the planet that really gets her, and she can't stand the idea of him getting fired over what someone thinks they saw. Everyone's begging for Tola's side of the story - students, reporters, the school board, her parents - but no one wants to hear the truth.
The Mymer scandal isn't the only thing plaguing Tola, star of Laura Ruby's newest YA novel, Bad Apple. She's dealing with a classmate's vicious cyber bullying, her dad's disappearance from her life, and her beloved Grandpa Joe's failing health. It's bad enough being an artist whose work is constantly misunderstood (except by Mr. Mymer, who's no longer a presence in the art room), but to be the center of the biggest scandal of the year, shaming her already dysfunctional family - well, it's a lot to handle, even for tough, snarky Tola Riley. When it's her against the world, Tola will deal the only way she knows how - her way.
While I give Laura Ruby credit for creating a unique character, Tola was almost too unique for me. Her humor's dark, angsty and bitter. She comes off as a prickly girl who kind of deserves her fate - she's sympathetic in some ways, I just had a hard time feeling it, you know? Teens will probably relate better to her sarcastic, cutting tone. I mean, she's definitely funny, but she's also really off-the-wall. A little too much for me. As far as plot goes, Ruby keeps it moving along at a steady pace. Bad Apple's a quick read, with some substance beyond just the student/teacher "relationship." Still and all, the book's too out there for me. It's not one of those YA books that speaks across generations - or maybe it just didn't speak to me personally. Whatever the reason, I suggest leaving Bad Apple on the tree and looking for more succulent fruit elsewhere.
Grade: C
If this were a movie, it would be rated: PG-13 for language, sexual innuendo, and brief references to homosexuality
To the FTC, with love: I received this ARC from HarperTeen. I think it's obvious that getting the book for free didn't influence my opinion in any way.


  1. But at least that cover is super cool!

  2. Hmm...I might give this a try even though the protagonist does seem a little out there.

  3. This sounds like something I might enjoy -- I often relate to people who are "out there." Thanks for your honest review.

  4. I so appreciate your candor. I struggled with a book that was not a fit for me this week. I've pondered whether I would write a review of what portions of the book I'd read but have decided against it. Certainly the book might be perfect for some but for me I gained more by closing the cover than anything else. Kudos for telling it the way you see it...
    You're awesome!


Comments make me feel special, so go crazy! Just keep it clean and civil. Feel free to speak your mind (I always do), but be aware that I will delete any offensive comments.

P.S.: Don't panic if your comment doesn't show up right away. I have to approve each one before it posts to prevent spam. It's annoying, but it works!

Blog Widget by LinkWithin


Farm to Trouble by Amanda Flower


The Lost and Found Bookshop by Susan Wiggs

Followin' with Bloglovin'


Followin' with Feedly

follow us in feedly

Grab my Button!

Blog Design by:

Blog Archive