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Guitar Notes
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Guitar Notes
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On odd days, Tripp uses a school practice room to let loose on a borrowed guitar. Eyes closed, strumming that beat-up instrument, Tripp escapes to a world where only the music matters. On even days,...
On odd days, Tripp uses a school practice room to let loose on a borrowed guitar. Eyes closed, strumming that beat-up instrument, Tripp escapes to a world where only the music matters. On even days,...
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Description-

  • On odd days, Tripp uses a school practice room to let loose on a borrowed guitar. Eyes closed, strumming that beat-up instrument, Tripp escapes to a world where only the music matters.

    On even days, Lyla Marks uses the same practice room. To Tripp, she's trying to become even more perfect—she's already a straight-A student and an award-winning cellist. But when Lyla begins leaving notes for him in between the strings of the guitar, his life intersects with hers in a way he never expected.

    What starts as a series of snippy notes quickly blossoms into the sharing of interests and secrets and dreams, and the forging of a very unlikely friendship.

    Challenging each other to write songs, they begin to connect, even though circumstances threaten to tear them apart.

    From beloved author Mary Amato comes a YA novel of wit and wisdom, both heartfelt and heart­breaking, about the power of music and the unexpected chords that draw us together.

About the Author-

  • Mary Amato is an award-winning children's and YA book author, songwriter, and poet who lives in Maryland. Her books have been translated into foreign languages, optioned for television, and produced onstage.

Reviews-

  • DOGO Books Mrs. Shaeffer - This entire story is told in the form of notes that two students leave for each other in a guitar left in a music practice room at their school. The book is both funny and sweet. An extra plus is a website where you can listen to the songs composed by the two young people.
  • Publisher's Weekly

    May 28, 2012
    Amato (Edgar Allan’s Official Crime Investigation Notebook) pens a music-driven meet-cute starring two dissimilar high school students. Trip Broody is an observant introvert whose only release is playing guitar. When his mother takes it away from him, in the hopes that he will become more social, he uses a school guitar and practice room, alternating days with Lyla Marks, a talented cellist who is under tremendous external pressure to get into a prestigious conservatory. What begins as an exchange of terse notes between Tripp and Lyla turns into emails and text messages, and soon a close friendship anchored by their shared love of music evolves. Trip encourages Lyla to loosen up, she draws him out of his shell, and they find similarities in their lives and begin to write music together. Amato nicely captures Tripp’s love of music and Lyla’s anxieties, though the story takes a late melodramatic turn that jars with the comparatively light material that precedes it. While the story is notably “clean” (Tripp and Lyla’s relationship is entirely chaste, and there’s no swearing, alcohol, etc.), the characters’ chemistry will have readers’ hearts racing. Ages 12–up.

  • Kirkus

    June 1, 2012
    Tripp Broody and Lila Marks (Mr. Odd and Ms. Even) alternate lunch-period use of an instrumental practice room and a school guitar, developing a bond through their shared feelings of pressure and their love for making their own music. Lila's deceased mother was a professional cellist. While Lila expects to follow in her footsteps, part of her would like a break from both the cello and a demanding best friend, Annie Win. Playing the guitar helped Tripp forget the death of his father and the absence of his best friend, who moved away, but his mother has confiscated his instrument until his grades improve. It is their developing emotional relationship rather than a physical connection that defines the novel. Short, third-person present-tense vignettes, each headed with a place and date, carry the plot along, helped by frequent emails, text messages and handwritten notes, as well as illustrations (not seen, but said to include music, notes, tests and receipts). The intense drama of the ending surprises after the gradual development of their friendship, but the picture of the myriad pressures teens feel rings true. Amato, also a Washington, D.C.-area songwriter, weaves in convincing musical detail and advice that will appeal especially to readers experimenting with an instrument themselves. This one will resonate. (Fiction. 12-16)

    COPYRIGHT(2012) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    October 1, 2012

    Gr 8 Up-Two very different high school students discover a mutual appreciation for writing songs for the guitar. Tripp Broody has lost a lot; his father died and his best friend moved away. He doesn't really connect with people, especially his nagging mother whose "help" isn't much appreciated. In contrast, Lyla Marks is perfect. She gets good grades, her teachers love her, and she plays the cello beautifully. Things are not perfect, however, as both her best friend and father suffocate her with unrealistic expectations and adulation over her talent. Forced to share a music practice room on alternating days at school, Lyla leaves a heated note one day when Tripp doesn't throw out his trash. This leads to a pen-pal-like exchange daily, and eventually in-person musical collaboration that promises to change both of their lives forever. Many chapters are structured as Tripp's and Lyla's notes, giving readers a unique vantage point into their burgeoning friendship. The teens find kindred spirits in one another, allowing them to develop lyrics for songs they write in a fluid and natural way. While the end of the novel has a bit of contrived tragedy, this is nevertheless a sweet story of two different loners finding their counterpoint.-Ryan P. Donovan, New York Public Library

    Copyright 2012 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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    Lerner Publishing Group
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