Codes for Reviews

First Initial (Overall Rating):
E = Exceptional
VG = Very Good
G = Good
F = Fair
NR = Not Recommended

Second Initital (Reading Level):
A = Average Reading Level
E = Easy
M = Mature

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Saturday, September 25, 2010

The Wager

Adult/YA Category

F/A Napoli, Donna Jo. The Wager. Henry Holt. 2010. ISN: 978-0-8050-87819. 259p. $16.99.

Napoli has always done an excellent job in YA Literature. However, this particular title was more suitable for adult than YA. Don Giovanni always has a very lavishing lifestyle. However, he lost everything after the earthquake hit Messina. A tidal wave washed away his wealth. He wandered off the country to look for food. He met a well-dressed stranger that offers him a wager – to remain in his clothes for three year and three month and three days. If he takes them off, he will lose the wager. It is a very unattractive wager, but as long as he complied, he can have all the wealth in the world. To him now, money is the most important thing because money can get him a place to rest, and food to feed himself. It he loses the wager, it is not only the money but also his soul. Without deep consideration, he entered into the wager and suffered three years, three months, and three days in his own clothes, unable to wash and clean his body. The best part of the book was the readers’ long expected happy ending. In a note to the reader Napoli mentioned that she chose to start the year in 1169 to correspond to the Mount Etna eruption. Dora Ho, Young Adult Librarian, Los Angeles Public Library.

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