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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Big Time«

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Big Time

Orca Book Publishers | Orca Limelights


Gerri waits outside all night to audition for Big Time, her favorite TV singing competition. She believes she has a shot at success, but when she’s insulted by one of the judges and kicked out of the competition, she thinks she’ll probably never sing again. After a teacher at her school asks her to join a choral club, Gerri reluctantly gets involved. Even though she can’t read music and she doesn’t know the other kids, she finds herself enjoying the group and learning a lot about music. A cute guy she met at the Big Time auditions joins the group, and when they perform their unique mashups at an open-mic night, Gerri realizes there’s more than one way to be a successful—and happy—singer!

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"A feel-good story that is all about a love of music and following one’s dreams."

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"Readers who have a musical interest will appreciate Gerri’s musical journey. It’s also refreshing to read about Gerri’s family that is extremely supportive of her dreams but realistic. Music brings generations together in this novel. The Limelights series promises readers a quick, interesting read and this book delivers."

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"A believable and instructive story about art and life."

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"Readers will want to ride along for the high hopes and disappointments, as well as the self-discovery that is part of Gerri’s journey to embrace and polish her talent."

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"I would recommend this book, due to its stellar characters and unique concept. Performing arts novels are quite rare after all!"

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Tom Ryan was born and raised in Inverness, Cape Breton. After high school, he studied English at Mount Allison University and then moved to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where he studied film production. He currently lives in Toronto, Ontario, with his husband and their dog, Wheeler. For more information, visit www.tomryanauthor.com.

 
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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Tag Along«

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Tag Along

Orca Book Publishers | Young Adult Novels


It's junior prom night. Andrea is grounded for getting her older brother to buy booze for her, Paul is having panic attacks, Roemi has been stood up by his Internet date, and Candace is busy tagging a building (before she gets collared by a particularly tenacious cop). By happenstance, the four near-strangers end up together, getting into more trouble, arguing and ultimately helping each other out over the course of eight madcap hours.

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"A novel of rites of passage, experience, and teenage angst, Tag Along captures the teen audience with well-written narrative, rich with emotion and spicy with the complications of life. The story is a page-turner with humour, angst, anger and joy breathing life through the momentous events of the evening. Truly entertaining and delightful. Highly recommended for leisure reading."

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"In this The Breakfast Club­-esque novel, four teens with little in common find their destinies intertwined on the night of their junior prom...Readers will enjoy this feel-good story."

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"Ryan must be given lots of points for style...Junior high teachers who put this fun and entertaining novel in the hands of reluctant and struggling readers are sure to be thanked by their students."

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"A quick read with some of the antics being laugh-out-loud funny. Most teens will identify with one of the main characters, though they each have their quirks. This could also spark discussions about loyalty, friendship, and being true to yourself."

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"It’s prom night, and four teens’ plans for the evening are about to get hijacked...They all manage to meet, get connected and ultimately have a prom night that is far more memorable than their original plans. Ryan never goes over the top as he unfurls the story, alternating the voices of the four teens, but exciting events occur, and the gradual jelling of the group is completely believable. A regular kid’s prom, minus the limo but with enough drama to satisfy."

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Tom Ryan was born and raised in Inverness, Cape Breton. After high school, he studied English at Mount Allison University and then moved to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where he studied film production. He currently lives in Toronto, Ontario, with his husband and their dog, Wheeler. For more information, visit www.tomryanauthor.com.

 
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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Totally Unrelated«

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Totally Unrelated

Orca Book Publishers | Orca Limelights


Neil plays guitar with his family's band, the Family McClintock, even though he can't stand the Celtic music they play, he doesn't dance, he hates the outfits, and every single performance reminds him that he isn't as talented as the rest of the family.

When his buddy Bert convinces him to form a rock band and enter a local talent show, Neil's playing improves and everyone notices, including a girl who shares his musical interests. He starts to think that all those years of practice might come in handy after all. But it all comes to a head when Neil has to choose between an important gig with the family band and the talent show. He's only sure of one thing: whatever he decides to do, he's going to be letting someone down.

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“Ryan writes well, and there’s a positive underlying message about following your own path while honouring other responsibilities and commitments...Given how many kids dream of stardom, the Limelights series is sure to hold wide appeal.”

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"A quick, enjoyable read, perfect for reluctant readers who like a 'feel good' story...Deals with subjects such as relationships, families, commitments, conflict and perserverance—a refreshing change."

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"Neil’s voice is honest, with a touch of sarcasm and lack of self-perception that is appropriate for this age. Ryan wisely uses his other characters to flesh out Neil’s blind spots for the reader...The plot moves quickly as the reader follows Neil’s rising excitement about shows...Highly Recommended."

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"Ryan uses simple language to create rich characters that stick with you long after you are finished reading the story. Readers can identify with Neil's struggles and his journey—the self-doubt and lack of direction. Bert, Sandy, and 'the Beast' are gorgeously drawn supporting characters who help Neil see beyond his own perceptions and reach for the dreams he didn't know he had."

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"Any reader who has ever taken lessons in anything—whether it be artistic or not—will appreciate Neil’s struggles and will completely understand the personal and family pressure he feels to perfect his craft. Readers will also appreciate the conflict he feels between family obligation and personal interests, and the author resolves the situation in a satisfying and realistic manner...This

innovative series offers something for all kinds of readers whether they are directly involved in the performing arts or not. They are short, fast-paced and well executed—stories perfect for fans of performing arts-focused television shows such as Glee."

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Tom Ryan was born and raised in Inverness, Cape Breton. After high school, he studied English at Mount Allison University and then moved to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where he studied film production. He currently lives in Toronto, Ontario, with his husband and their dog, Wheeler. For more information, visit www.tomryanauthor.com.

 
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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Pop Quiz«

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Pop Quiz

Orca Book Publishers | Orca Limelights


Fifteen-year-old Aiden is a minor cast member on a long-running high school "dramedy" with a low budget and a loyal following. Aiden and his friends are excited that they're being promoted to lead roles for the upcoming tenth season of Pop Quiz. But then they learn the show is being canceled. According to the producers, no one even watches TV anymore, with kids preferring the antics of YouTube stars. With the help of some former cast members and a group of hardcore fans, Aiden and his friends attempt to create a movie special to wrap up the storylines and give the series the send-off it deserves.

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"The story is fast-paced and hard to put down…Pop Quiz is an appealing, hopeful story of community and the performing arts. Recommended. "

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Tom Ryan was born and raised in Inverness, Cape Breton. After high school, he studied English at Mount Allison University and then moved to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where he studied film production. He currently lives in Toronto, Ontario, with his husband and their dog, Wheeler. For more information, visit www.tomryanauthor.com.

 
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Cover zur kostenlosen eBook-Leseprobe von »Way to Go«

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Way to Go

Orca Book Publishers


Danny thinks he must be the only seventeen-year-old guy in Cape Breton—in Nova Scotia, maybe—who doesn't have his life figured out. His buddy Kierce has a rule for every occasion, and his best friend Jay has bad grades, no plans and no worries. Danny's dad nags him about his post-high-school plans, his friends bug him about girls and a run-in with the cops means he has to get a summer job. Worst of all, he's keeping a secret that could ruin everything.

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"With a cast of authentic characters, Tom Ryan explores the topic of coming out in a small town...Way to Go speaks not only directly to teens coming to terms with being gay, but also to anyone who feels like an outsider."

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"The characters are wonderfully written and are brought to life more by their words and actions than simply by descriptions...While Way to Go deals with serious topics, such as sexual orientation, identity, self-acceptance, friendship and family, Tom Ryan keeps the story moving and does not let it get too heavy or depressing for the reader...An excellent coming-of-age story that will appeal to a variety of readers."

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"Ryan gives a balanced look into the experience of a teen struggling with his sexuality and other related questions and concerns against the small town setting of Deep Cove...Way To Go offers a positive representation of LGTBQ stories that go beyond simple coming out narratives."

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"There's a lot to love about this story, and with every character so complex and every subplot full of intrigue, Way to Go has something to offer so many readers, gay or straight, boy or girl. This isn't a coming out story. It’s a coming of age story. And I promise, it will make you laugh, too."

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"Ryan has an engaging writing style and nicely captures the angst of being a teenager—and the excitement...Ryan's portrait of rural Nova Scotia doesn't avoid the issues of the limitations of small-town life in the Maritimes but he makes it equally clear that it's a world that not everyone wants to escape from. Way to go, Tom Ryan!"

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"The theme of the book is relevant: exploring your sexuality and dealing with peer pressure to be someone you aren't. Recommended."

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"Tom Ryan's deft hand at teen angst makes one wonder if a percentage of the story is autobiographical...The main characters have depth and realistic flaws that make the book a good read for high school students."

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"The [novel's] realism adds to its considerable emotional impact."

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"This coming out/coming of age story is a clean, quick and easy read."

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"An enjoyable, sensitive and poignant portrait of a summer in the life of a (maybe) gay teen. Danny's search to understand his sexuality will be helpful to others in similar situations and will be enlightening to others who are simply curious about the experiences of young people coming to terms with being gay...An important addition to books available for young readers."

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"This book is a truly life-changing one. It will make you question your views and the way you inflict them on others."

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"The characters are all very well developed. The plot was solid and the setting of the book was presented in such as way that I actually felt like I was there...[A] light, fun read and...a good introduction to this genre."

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"Danny is a believable character, and students struggling with the same issue will identify with him..It is a well-written book on the topics of homosexuality and friendship."

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"A very well done book about a front-burner topic, it makes a fine addition to the 'I think I'm gay' genre. Danny is very believable, and unlike so many 'issue' novels, the supporting characters are fully realized and multi-dimensional...A lot of kids will benefit from reading it...It's a story that absolutely needs to be told, and the author's approach succeeds beautifully. Excellent."

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"Those who, like Danny, feel like 'an island of gayness in an ocean of straightness,' should identify with his search for a path of his own."

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"Ryan aptly shows the confusion a young adult feels when determining his/her sexuality...Dan's story is one that will entertain and educate...Ryan definitely has something to offer to young adults who might be pondering how best to navigate the murky waters of sexual self-discovery."

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"This insightful first book is a quick, interesting, and pleasurable read. The life lessons are important and the style and tone are excellent...The story is well-told and the topic of being gay is handled with grace."

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"Danny's coming of age summer is about more than just his sexuality; he's also discovering who he wants to be as a person and what he wants to do as a career...This book's Canadian-ness sets it apart from a lot of other coming of age novels, and that's important, because while Canada shares a lot of culture with America, there are some differences."

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"Ryan easily finds the voices of the teens, male and female, gay and straight, as well as the adults with whom they interact, as if he has been all those people and speaks from experience."

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"This engaging book about a reluctantly gay adolescent is more about finding one's way in life than it is about gender...The subplots in this book work well with the main storyline and the absence of any contrived or strident posturing is very reassuring. This book deserves all the respect a reader can give it."

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"From page one I was swept into Danny's world. Tom Ryan wrote a book that I will read over and over again...This book was phenomenal and I recommend it to everyone."

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Tom Ryan was born and raised in Inverness, Cape Breton. After high school, he studied English at Mount Allison University and then moved to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where he studied film production. He currently lives in Toronto, Ontario, with his husband and their dog, Wheeler. For more information, visit www.tomryanauthor.com.

 
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