School's back in session at John Paul 2 High, and for students J.P. and Liz, not much could be worse.
The little start-up school where both their moms teach has doubled its number of students, bringing in a gaggle of clueless freshmen, singing charismatics, and annoying personages. For Liz, the major annoyance is Mary Summers, her old rival for Brian's affection. For J.P., it's a Byzantine Catholic named Athanasius Courchraine who somehow manages to be even cooler than J.P.
With Celia pushing the gag-inducing idea of creating a Catholic "community" in the midst of formal education, both kids escape to a place where religion is off the table-- Sparrow Hills High.
Then, as Liz joins the cheer team and J.P. becomes the school mascot, they start hearing rumors about the school shooting that happened at Sparrow Hills last spring. The police say the shooter is dead... but is he?
Unable to resist a challenge, Liz and J.P. get on the case. But the more they investigate the hazier the police evidence seems. And if the Sparrow Hills Shooter is still out there, no one is safe...
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The gang of JP2HS is back again, and the challenges are bigger than ever. The trials of a start-up Catholic school against the backdrop of a horrifying school shooting make a page-turning read. The students are sweet and petty, timid and courageous, funny and very serious. In other words, typical teens faced with huge issues on top of the usual challenges of growing up. This is a fun book, with a lot of cute and touching moments as well as some heart pounding excitement.
Karina Fabian, author of Mind over Mind and the DragonEye series
Age 16 - Up
5.05" x 7.81"
Posted by Tiffany R. Walsh on 31st Dec 2015
The John Paul 2 High series is a group effort by a handful of authors wishing to provide young adult fiction from a Catholic perspective.
The books chronicle a group of students at a new (and very small) upstart Catholic high school named in honor of St. John Paul the Great.
The characters run the gamut from devout Catholics with possible religious vocations to a girl from a broken and irreligious home, the class clown, the athlete that all the girls want to date, several shy and previously homeschooled students, and the cradle Catholics with a decided lack of enthusiasm for their faith, all harboring the sorts of insecurities one would expect from that age group. Each book features two of the main characters more prominently, as well as a storyline that persists throughout the series about an unknown assailant who is stalking one of the female characters and engineered a school shooting at the nearby public high school, Sparrow Hills.
In Book 5, the characters are entering their second year at John Paul 2 High. There are new students, adding fresh romance and mystery subplots. The police have caught whom they believe is the Sparrow Hills shooter, but doubt remains in the minds of a few students who set out to solve the puzzle on their own, unwittingly putting their safety at risk.
These are engaging stories even for adults, with well-developed characters and thought-provoking storylines. Provocative issues faced by teenagers are posed and dealt with via Catholic moral teaching.
Book 5 addresses recreational drugs and lying/starting rumors as a result of coveting the relationship or athletic status of another.
All of these books are highly recommended for public and Catholic school libraries.
They would make ideal gifts for those receiving the Sacrament of Confirmation at high school age.