Reviews

Crossing Jordan

In this sensitive portrait of black-white relations in a changing neighborhood, Fogelin offers a tactful even-handed look at prejudice. USA Today

Fogelin creates Cass and Jemmie as complex characters with the same differences of approach and personality that mark the interactions of other best friends, whatever their skin color. Cass’ straightforward voice never falters, even when she questions her father’s beliefs and her own decisions. Readers will appreciate the honesty of Fogelin’s approach and applaud the two girls in their fast friendship. The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

Jemmie and Cass are likable, lively characters, and readers will enjoy the repartee between them. School Library Journal

Old experiences and lifelong attitudes are hard to overcome, as Adrian Fogelin deftly demonstrates in her portrayal of Cass’ dad and Jemmie’s mom. Fogelin’s characters are complex, fallible, and loving, as are real people, making Crossing Jordan an engrossing coming-of-age story. Orange County Register

Praise for the audio edition of Crossing Jordan:

The author’s narration captures the emotional seesaw of adolescence and fittingly portrays characters of other ages with various accents. Her restrained approach contributes to the characters’ credibility and complexity. This enjoyable performance could serve as a good starting point for a discussion about prejudice. AudioFile

Fogelin’s narration reflects her intricate knowledge of the characters, and she brings the emotional depth of each scene to life. Southern life resonates as the author expertly defines each character’s unique traits and dialect. An engrossing, evenhanded look at prejudice and interracial friendship. School Library Journal

Fogelin does a stupendous job giving Cass a voice that is both strong and innocent … This audio version of a story of hope, friendship and the ability to look beyond skin color to the person within is a solid performance suitable for family listening, especially where racial issues need to be addressed. SoundCommentary


Anna Casey’s Place in the World

Anna has inner pluck and outer charm; she’s been through a lot, but knows what needs to be done. Evocative descriptions bubble up from a deep reality… And places are found, if not the ones both kids thought they wanted. Booklist

This is a thoughtful coming-of-age story and Anna is an intrepid heroine to whom middle school students will be able to relate. Kliatt


My Brother’s Hero

As in Adrian Fogelin’s previous novels, Crossing Jordan and Anna Casey’s Place in the World, this story has plenty of action, but it’s the emotional drama, revealed in funny, realistic dialogue and spot-on descriptions, that distinguish the novel. Readers just leaping into adolescence will easily connect with Ben, who is both sharply observant of and bewildered by the adult world and his own place in it. Booklist


Sister Spider Knows All

Delivered in a wry voice that swings from laugh-out-loud funny to wrenching sadness, Rox’s narrative is neither sentimental nor condescending, and details of place, people, and class conflict emerge in plain poetic imagery.  Booklist

Fogelin captures the fragility of this unique family with a lot of humor and great characters. Set in Tallahassee, Florida, the story has universal themes of coming of age and searching for one’s identity. Reluctant readers will like the short, fast-paced chapters.  The School Library Journal

Americans tend to avoid discussing class differences, and this charming story about a girl who lives in a trailer with her chain-smoking, obese grandmother is something out of the ordinary… The lines between the classes become somewhat blurred and we understand that life is pretty much that way, and that a loving, close family is a treasure whatever circumstances they are living in. Kliatt

Dead-on dialogue and strong, complex characters. The Washington Post

…a richly drawn story of human dynamics, offering both support for people as they are and hope for their growth. Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books


The Big Nothing

Fogelin plots a thoroughly engaging story of teen angst, multicultural and political divisions, and a natural desire of neighbors to come to one another’s aid. The characters may be doves, hawks, or mélanges in between, but they are sincere in their beliefs and yet can find room in their hearts to pull together for Duane. Serious and humorous by turns, this seemingly simple story is actually quite complex but not weighty and will be enthusiastically embraced. The School Library Journal [starred review]

The impending war in Iraq gives this story a definite place in time, and its distinct characters make it satisfying and surprisingly realistic. Misfit finds fit.  Booklist

Fogelin’s character-driven narrative… speaks of the painful transitions of adolescence with rare humor and honesty. Kirkus

Fogelin, the author of Crossing Jordan and other novels for YAs, sensitively describes Justin’s world and his conflicting emotions as he tries to deal with his situation at home and with shifting relationships with his friends. An absorbing and well-written tale.” Kliatt


The Real Question

Fogelin’s latest work is much more than a coming-of-age tale. Fisher’s first-person narration is dead-on, at times bouncing between the sarcastic, intense, needy voice of a teen and the compassionate, giving, but wary voice of an adult. This amazing title is a perfect “guy book”, and should be required reading for every teen, male or female, who feels the weight of a parent’s expectations but cannot quite figure out what to do about it.  VOYA

This coming-of-age story is marked by Fisher’s first-person narrative that mixes wry humor and bittersweet thoughts. Readers will empathize with the engaging young man who, without a guidebook, sorts through life’s real questions. Kirkus

Fogelin delivers another smart tale…Fisher’s delightfully telegraphed epiphanies, the funny, harrowing road trip, and a satisfying showdown with Dad yield a novel that may well appeal to teens of both sexes. Publishers Weekly

A short, satisfying lesson in caring. School Library Journal


The Sorta Sisters

Fogelin offers a readable combination of narrative and letters that are infused with details about science, as the girls send seed pods, shells and other specimens to each other. Readers will appreciate the pen-pal friendship and the hopeful ending. Kirkus

Fogelin does a beautiful job of examining the complex, often painful, aspects of friendship and family. The Oklahoman

Another wonderful children’s book… Tallahassee Democrat

The lively, third-person narrative alternates between each girl’s perspective, and the frequently inserted letters bring intimacy and depth to the characters. Lovely sepia drawings by the author depict wildlife and the packages that the girls send to each other throughout the novel. A heartfelt story that shows the many factors that create family, friends, and a home. Booklist

This…book in Fogelin’s ‘neighborhood’ series can stand alone, and the ending makes it clear that this enjoyable saga will continue. School Library Journal


Summer on the Moon

A winsome tale chock-full of strong-minded people providing mutual support and well-timed nudges in good directions. Booklist * STARRED REVIEW *

The third-person narration is tightly focused through Socko’s perspective, adopting a gentle colloquial voice that complements the natural dialogue. Steeped in violence (more implied than graphic) and poverty, but focused on love and hope. Kirkus

“I love Summer on the Moon by Adrian Fogelin…” Susan Marston, editorial director of Junior Library Guild

While it has good female characters, Summer on the Moon is a perfect summer read for boys age 10 and older. Washington Post

A fine, complex tale of family, friends and magic. Kirkus


Some Kind of Magic

A fine, complex tale of family, friends, and magic. Kirkus