Title: Living with Jackie Chan
Series: Jumping Off Swings
Author: Jo Knowles
Published: September 10th, 2013
Dates Read: September 27th, 2016 to October 4th, 2016
Rating: 3 stars
“I stand here, looking at it. At my new life. No more people staring at me when I walk down the hall. No more whispers behind my back. No one knows me here. No one knows what happened. What I did. I just have to get through the year, get into college someplace far away, and leave for good.”
― Jo Knowles,
After fathering a baby, a teenager moves in with his karate-loving uncle and tries to come to terms with his guilt — and find a way to forgive.
This isn’t how Josh expected to spend senior year. He thought he’d be hanging out with his best friends, Dave and Caleb, driving around, partying, just like always. But here he is, miles from home — new school, new life, living with his Jackie-Chan-obsessed uncle, Larry, and trying to forget. But Josh can’t forget. So many things bring back memories of last year and the night that changed everything. Every day the pain, the shame, and the just not knowing are never far from his thoughts. Why is he such a loser? How could he have done what he did? He finds some moments of peace when he practices karate with Stella, the girl upstairs and his one real friend. As they move together through the katas, Josh feels connected in a way he has never felt before. He wonders if they could be more than friends, but Stella’s jealous boyfriend will make sure that doesn’t happen. And maybe it doesn’t matter. If Stella knew the truth, would she still think he was a True Karate Man? Readers first met Josh in Jumping Off Swings which told the story of four high school students and how one pregnancy changed all of their lives. In this companion book, they follow Josh as he tries to come to terms with what happened, and find a way to forgive.
“Saying good-bye to them was like saying good-bye to some people who used to know me when I was a little kid. Like saying good-bye to zombies. Good-bye to a memory. Good-bye to dust. The real good-bye happened a long, long time ago.”
― Jo Knowles,
This is the second book in Jo Knowles Jumping Off Swings and comes after Living with Jackie Chan.
When I read the first book in the series I found myself not wanting to put it down but it was the opposite with this book. I found myself bored and not caring if I had to put my Ipad down. I was not as invested in the second book as I was in the first book. Now this book is a good book but it really was not what I was looking for in the second book of a series.
I did think it was an interesting way to take the second book and having it be from Josh and the aftermath of what happened in the first book. Found within the book are a few minor new characters that play roles in Josh’s life but for me where not that appealing. But I think that Jo writing this book to see how Josh ended up was great I would have also like a little insight into Ellie and the others to see how they all turned out. Maybe Jo plan on writing those but they would be nice to read.
Overall Jo has taken issues that are important and common in today’s society and she wrote a book that expresses the hardships that kids are forced with when thrown a challenge like the one thrown the kids in this series.