Parents' Guide to


By Kate Pavao, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Gritty sequel about abused sisters lacks original's spark.

Book Ellen Hopkins Poetry 2013
Smoke Poster Image

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Kids say (3):

Smoke feels like a bit of a kitchen sink novel, with all sorts of plot lines mixed in. Beyond the basic story, Pattyn faces off against a racist group of "Sovereign citizens [who] don't believe in / taxes / licenses / authority / government," and Jackie falls in love with a boy with two moms, who's witnessed a different kind of terrible abuse at their school. Hopkins fans will be at home with the fast-moving verse format (including clever poems that run parallel to each other on the page and can be read together or separately). Also, although readers will find plenty to think about in this gritty sequel -- including an important message about the importance of speaking up against bullies, even when it puts you at risk -- they may be put off by all the plotting, as well as by an ending that wraps up much too conveniently.

Book Details

  • Author: Ellen Hopkins
  • Genre: Poetry
  • Book type: Fiction
  • Publisher: McElderry Books
  • Publication date: September 10, 2013
  • Publisher's recommended age(s): 14 - 18
  • Number of pages: 560
  • Available on: Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
  • Last updated: July 12, 2017

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