Author: Ellen Hopkins
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
Publication Date: August 20, 2009
Five teenagers from different parts of the country. Three girls. Two guys. Four straight. One gay. Some rich. Some poor. Some from great families. Some with no one at all. All living their lives as best they can, but all searching…for freedom, safety, community, family, love. What they don’t expect, though, is all that can happen when those powerful little words “I love you” are said for all the wrong reasons.
Five moving stories remain separate at first, then interweave to tell a larger, powerful story — a story about making choices, taking leaps of faith, falling down, and growing up. A story about kids figuring out what sex and love are all about, at all costs, while asking themselves, “Can I ever feel okay about myself?
Emotional. Out of all of the words I can use to describe this book, I keep coming back to this single word. Ellen Hopkins truly has a way with words and emotions and Tricks was certainly no exception.
Tricks follows the lives of five teenagers, each dealing with their own issues and emotions in life. While they all have different stories and backgrounds, they intertwine when all five end up turning tricks (hence the book title). While the end result is bad enough, it’s the journey that was the most gut-wrenching for me. I couldn’t imagine the things that these kids had to go through. The lengths they would have to go to in order to survive just astounded me. It really makes you take a step back and realize that your problems, while still important, may not be as bad as others.
I said it in my review of Burned and I will say it again – this is one of the most heartbreaking and powerful books I have read. I can’t get enough of Ellen Hopkins and will be reading more of her books in the future.