Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 14 to 18
- Grade: 9 to 12
- Reading age: 7 to 10
As far as Mary, a.k.a. Meringue, can tell, the only good thing about moving from Vancouver to Red Deer following her parents' divorce is that she was able to get a head-start on earning her Learner's Permit. Now she's sixteen, she can drive on her own. When her friend Jeff asks her to cover his pizza route, Meringue jumps at the chance to cruise around town on her mother's scooter. Little does she know that Jeff has been using his father's pizza shop as a cover-up for his small-scale drug deals. By the time Meringue figures out whats going on, a bigger drug dealer is moving in on Jeff's business -- and on her. Meringue is scared. How can she get herself out without snitching?
[Fry reading level - 3.0
About the author
A past winner of the Open Space Emerging Writers' Competition and a finalist in Paragraph's Short Fiction Contest, Jodi Lundgren has published in literary magazines such as Trivia, Paragraph and subTerrain, as well as in the anthology Beyond Bedlam. Her critical writing has appeared in Canadian Literature, Matrix and Essays on Canadian Writing. She is currently working on a novel for young adults.
- Winner, Canadian Children's Book Centre Best Books for Kids & Teens
"Blow is another hi-lo title that I can see my non-readers picking up at the beginning of the school year. The story is written in a way even my struggling readers will be able to find accessible."
"Lundgren is to be commended for portraying Asians within a contemporary context rather than in stereotypical ideals. Her writing shines as she portrays the complexities of racism through Meringue's relationship with Jeff... Lundgren demonstrates that racism goes beyond slurs and uncomfortable glances."
Canadian Review of Materials (CM)
"A mature, gritty novel about teens who make a mistake. The characters have realistic worries and interactions. Highly recommended."
Educator at Vancouver School Board
"I am always looking for good high-interest low reading level titles to share with students, and this book did not disappoint! It had relatable characters and a fast-paced plot. The writing style was perfect for the genre and I would definitely recommend it to students."