I don't usually like to write about a book before I've finished it. But you know what? I can't help myself. THE ALLEGRA BISCOTTI COLLECTION by Olivia Bennett (Sourcebooks, 2010) is so freaking stuck in my head that last night while I was getting dressed to go out I was thinking of its main character.
I'm not even kidding. I was putting together a way-over-the-top outfit for my birthday celebration (we went to Sonic for dinner -- yes, THAT Sonic) and I was trying a bright purple mini dress and sparkly shoes with the right leggings and I thought to myself, "What would Emma Rose do?"
That's when I knew: THE ALLEGRA BISCOTTI COLLECTION is definitely one of the best tween books of 2010. When a character sticks with you like that, when you haven't even had a chance to pick up the book yet that day, man, you know it's good.
And I love that this book is about a young entrepreneur. Emma Rose is a thirteen-year-old fashion designer juggling all the craziness of the 8th grade with an accidentally burgeoning career. And, okay, I'm only about halfway through the book, but I have loved every page -- and not just because the pages are decorated with illustrations from Emma's sketchbook. But because Emma is so real, so vivid, so inspiring.
I started making my own clothes when I was in high school, but maybe if I'd read THE ALLEGRA BISCOTTI COLLECTION I would have gotten a head start. And had some serious delusions of grandeur...because the way Emma Rose is headed, whoa, there's no stopping this girl. Gotta love a character that lights a fire in you, that's for sure.
So, with Channukkah in full swing and Christmas right around the corner, I hope you'll give the young girlie-girl in your life some ALLEGRA BISCOTTI. I promise, she'll fall in love just like me!
Oh, and PS, yes it *is* my birthday today. And some of the YA-5ers are on my blog making fun of me. Hop on over for the hilarity.