Book Review of Zero by Tom Leveen

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Title: Zero

Author: Tom Leveen

Review by: Dani Hoots

Rating: 5/5

BACK THE KICKSTARTER HERE

Back cover:

After missing her best opportunity to attend a prestigious art school, 17-year-old Salvador Dali devotee Amanda Walsh (nicknamed Zero) begins dating Mike, a drummer in an up-and-coming punk band. As their tentative relationship blooms, Zero confronts a ton of baggage holding her back from her art career: the majorly awkward drama with her former best friend, Jenn; her dad’s excessive drinking and parents’ ongoing fights; and one formerly successful art teacher who might just hold the keys to her future . . . or smash Z’s hopes forever.

When Mike’s band gets a chance of lifetime to bust out of the black hole that is metro Phoenix, Zero must make a life-altering decision and answer the one question we all face at some point in our lives:

Follow your heart, or the heart of the one you love?

ZERO is a completed, award-winning young adult novel originally published by Random House Children’s Books in 2012.

Review:

I could not put this book down! I read it all in one sitting as I kept having to turn the page to know what happens next. Tom does a great job creating a voice that anyone can connect to. I felt for Zero and everything she went through, whether I had gone through the same things or not (of which some I have…).

Zero is an artist, and as any artist knows (whether they paint, draw, write, perform, etc) you want to succeed and create the things you love, but can those two things be the same thing? You can create what you love, but will anyone want it? That is a question Zero has to face, at the same time she is 17 and going through changes, new love, friendship problems, home problems, and not getting the scholarship she wanted. So much is going on in Zero’s life that you really feel for her and connect to the times when the whole world changed for you, whether you wanted it to or not.

I recommend this to anyone who loves YA and coming of age stories. It is something we all can connect to. It is set in ’92, which is the best year if we are honest. 90s were great. I miss the 90s…

Check out below about the Kickstarter Tom Leveen is doing for his book! I highly recommend backing and making this story and even bigger success! There will be notes, afterwards, and some other awesome perks! If we can reach the extended goals, we will know exactly what happens after the last page. Who doesn’t want that from a book they love? I know I want it, so go back it for me!

FROM KICKSTARTER PAGE:

Story

Where were you in ’92?

The Cold War was over! WE WON! The Berlin Wall had fallen, and David Hasselhoff was really lit about that! (Anyone? Anyone? Lit? The lightbulb jacket…?) Glam rock was dead, flannels suddenly cost $90, punk rock was transforming right before our eyes.

It was the best of times to be 17. As much as being 17 can be the best of times…

ZERO is a completed, award-winning young adult novel originally published by Random House Children’s Books in 2012. I recently got the rights to this story returned to me, and because of its fan base, I want to re-release it with never-before-seen notes, annotations, and an afterword. And maybe more…

This campaign will also introduce new readers to the snarky, sympathetic struggles of a young artist navigating the turmoil of love and art!

 

BACK THIS KICKSTARTER BY CLICKING HERE

 

“This book will appeal to teens who enjoy romance with a bit of an edge.” ~ Voice Of Youth Advocates, Feb. 2012

ZERO is about a young artist and a young musician, high on their arts, each other, and nothing else. It’s the thrill of a first kiss, the anxiety of putting yourself out there, and all the excitement of being this age at this time — whether you were there or not.

The original hardcover jacket.

After missing her best opportunity to attend a prestigious art school, 17-year-old Salvador Dali devotee Amanda Walsh (nicknamed Zero) begins dating Mike, a drummer in an up-and-coming punk band. As their tentative relationship blooms, Zero confronts a ton of baggage holding her back from her art career: the majorly awkward drama with her former best friend, Jenn; her dad’s excessive drinking and parents’ ongoing fights; and one formerly successful art teacher who might just hold the keys to her future . . . or smash Z’s hopes forever.

When Mike’s band gets a chance of lifetime to bust out of the black hole that is metro Phoenix, Zero must make a life-altering decision and answer the one question we all face at some point in our lives:

Follow your heart, or the heart of the one you love?

“I don’t know how Tom Leveen did it, but ZERO (the book and the character) feels 100% authentic.” ~ Goodreads review

“Amanda’s snappy, consistent voice displays the tension between her conviction that she’s got what it takes to be an artist and her feelings of low self-worth. Artful.” Kirkus Reviews, April 24, 2012
What makes ZERO so special is its brutal authenticity. It perfectly captures the energy and fear and excitement and dread of being freshly graduated and experiencing what seems to be your life falling apart, whether that’s between you and your parents, or your best friend, or the boy or girl you really want to date. It doesn’t shy away from the complexity of sex and love or art and business. The book deals with these topics with a smile and a sigh, because Zero (the novel) knows you are not alone, which is one of the things Zero (the character) is still learning.

 

BACK THIS KICKSTARTER BY CLICKING HERE

I’m bringing this second edition of Zero to Kickstarter because I have learned from nine books and ten years that Story is best in community. In fact it can only exist in community. There are people I’ve met by chance as a result of my novels who I now consider good friends. Some of them I’ve never met in person, some I see frequently, but the depth of the community that has organically developed around my novels and stories is what keeps me going, and I want to share that with more people, just like I know my fans want to share with others, too.

Zero is a note; a reminder that while we are constantly faced with hard choices (particularly when we are young), it’s going to work out. It’s going to be okay.Its a note that says you’re not alone; to follow your instincts and believe that anything is possible. I don’t know about you, but I need that reminder constantly.

So let’s ramp up that good karma! Everyone who pledges above the first level will receive an e-book of the second edition, and everyone will receive a mention and Thank You in the new edition’s Acknowledgements.

Thank you so much for your encouragement, whether you’re a new reader or an old fan ready for more about Zero, Mike, and the band. 

Share your art!

BACK THIS KICKSTARTER BY CLICKING HERE

 

~Dani

 

 

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