In one horrifying night, Andy's life changed forever...
Andy Jackson was driving the car that crashed one night after a game, killing Robert Washington, his best friend and the captain of the Hazelwood High Tigers. It was late, and they'd been drinking, and now, months later, Andy can't stop blaming himself. As he turns away from family, friends, and even his girlfriend, he finds he's losing the most precious thing of all - his ability to face the future.
Cheryle T. reviewed Tears of a Tiger (Hazelwood High, Bk 1) on
This is a great book for you and a teen to read together. It deals with life's challenges and may spark some topics that can easily be discussed with a teenager. The teen is this book deals with a lot of peer pressure. I would strongly suggest reading this book if you have problems with talking with a teenager about what life has to offer.
This can be a very powerful book for the right reader. I think if I had read this as a pre-teen/younger teen it would have done a lot more for me.
I definitely liked the way Draper wrote the book, she wrote it using a series of essay assignments, poems, letters to friends, conversations between friends and the young characters and their parents, news articles, etc. That's different than a lot of books today and I enjoyed the difference.
The most powerful part for me was the very end, Monty's letter to Andy. Monty is Andy's 6 year old little brother and that letter (along with the others at the end) showed a pretty wide range of emotions between the friends and between the young people. That part, along with most of the rest of the book, seemed very realistic to me.
There were a few parts of the book that seemed really wooden. Nothing too big and nothing to really take away from the book IMO, but wooden nontheless.
I'd say besides Monty's ending letter, Keisha and her input was pretty powerful also. I think this probably makes a great book for a young reluctant reader too
My students ADORE Tears of a Tiger. They enjoy the different writing formats, the pace, the "believableness" of the storyline, and that almost all of the characters are Black. We proceeded to read the entire trilogy. As an English teacher, I was delighted with the hunger with which my students consumed these books. Furthermore, we had real-life conversations about drinking, driving, looking for support from others, not being "shut down" by adults who don't hear us, and better, realistic options to being compelled to make irreversible life choices. This book changed how many students felt about "having" to read.