Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 13
- Grade: 9 to 12
When 16-year-old Raina Resnick is expelled from her Manhattan private school, she’s sent to live with her strict aunt — but Raina feels like she’s persona non grata no matter where she goes. Her sister, Leah, blames her for her broken engagement, and she’s a social pariah at her new school. In the tight-knit Jewish community, Raina finds she is good at one thing: matchmaking! As the anonymous “Match- Maven,” Raina sets up hopeless singles desperate to find the One. A cross between Jane Austen’s Emma, Dear Abby, and Yenta the matchmaker, Raina’s double life soon has her barely staying awake in class. Can she find the perfect match for her sister and get back on her good side, or will her tanking grades mean a second expulsion? In her debut novel, Suri Rosen creates a comic and heartwarming story of one girl trying to find happiness for others, and redemption for herself.
About the author
- Winner, Canadian Jewish Literary Award for Youth Literature
Suri Rosen dabbles in many arts, but excels in daydreaming. She has worked as a professional artist, filmmaker, journalist, and TV producer. Playing with Matches is her first novel. She lives in Toronto, Ontario.
“Charming … Rosen gives us a coming-of-age tale with a twist featuring a fun heroine who puts 100 per cent toward creating a happy ending.” — Quill & Quire
"This charming story of growing up and owning up, will ring true with readers, particularly those who share her cultural traditions." — School Library Journal
“Fizzy, funny and ultimately redemptive.” — Kirkus Reviews
“Playing with Matches is compulsively readable. It is absolute fun, and Raina is the best kind of narrator." — CM: Canadian Review of Materials
"Playing with Matches is a fabulously unique story—formal matchmaking is definitely not a regular theme in YA—that embeds all the angst of falling in love and growing up and doing right by your family and yourself all under one cover." — CanLit for Little Canadians
Playing With MatchesWhen 16-year-old Raina Resnick is expelled from her Manhattan private school, she’s sent to live with her strict aunt and finds herself a social pariah at her new school. In the tight-knit Jewish community, Raina finds she is good at one thing: matchmaking!
This book examines the complexities that many adolescents face accepting their own identities, and questioning their role in society. This contemporary story which will likely intrigue reluctant young adult readers and can be used as a strong example of characterization in novels. Author available for class visits. @SuriRosen
Source: Association of Canadian Publishers. Top Grade Selection 2016.