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Catalyst

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Meet Kate Malone — straight-A science and math geek, minister's daughter, ace long-distance runner, new girlfriend (to Mitchell "Early Decision Harvard" Pangborn III), unwilling family caretaker, and emotional avoidance champion. Kate manages her life by organizing it as logically as the periodic table. She can handle it all — or so she thinks. Then, things change as suddenly as a string of chemical reactions; first, the Malones' neighbors get burned out of their own home and move in. Kate has to share her room with her nemesis, Teri Litch, and Teri's little brother. The days are ticking down and she's still waiting to hear from the only college she applied to: MIT. Kate feels that her life is spinning out of her control — and then, something happens that truly blows it all apart. Set in the same community as the remarkable Speak, Catalyst is a novel that will change the way you look at the world.

Review:

"Teens will take to Kate instantly....the universal obstacles she faces and the realistic outcome will likely hold readers' attention." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"[A]nything by this author is well worth reading. The chemistry metaphor is cleverly employed throughout, and readers will quickly become caught up in Kate's and Teri's dramas and struggles." KLIATT

Review:

"Intelligently written with multi-dimensional characters that replay in one's mind, this complex, contemporary story carries much of the intensity and harshness of Speak (2000). It confronts moral issues, religious conundrums, and the dynamics of emotions in young adult lives as two girls driven by the past and present realize their impact on the future." Kirkus Reviews

Synopsis:

From the author of Speak comes a novel that confronts the conundrum of young adult life. Kate manages her life by organizing it as logically as the periodic table. She can handle it all — or so she thinks. Then things dramatically change.

About the Author

LAURIE HALSE ANDERSON is the New York Times bestselling author of books for all ages. Known for tackling tough subjects with humor and sensitivity, her work has earned numerous ALA and state awards. Two of her books, Speak and Chains, were National Book Award finalists and Laurie was chosen for the 2009 Margaret A. Edwards Award. Mother of four and wife of one, Laurie lives in Northern New York, where she likes to watch the snow fall as she writes. You can find out more about Laurie at www.writerlady.com

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 5 comments:

gablink7, May 26, 2015 (view all comments by gablink7)
I like this book, but I can also see that some people are not going to like this book, or is going to say it's ok. I like the message in this book that we don't know what life is going to be like. We have so much time, or so little of time and what we do with it is up to you. But family is all we have at the end of the day, no matter what family we have!
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cookeallie, December 7, 2011 (view all comments by cookeallie)
"Catalyst", by Laurie Halse Anderson, did an amazing job at relating to an average high schooler's life. The book was interesting enough for me to read from start to finish and not lose my attention even once. I could never guess what was going to happen next."Catalyst" also did a well job at bringing every type of issue to the table, whether those issues being bullying, child abuse, academic stress, relationship and friend issues, and even death. I felt that every person that has a chance to read the book could greatly relate to it in one way, if not multiple ways. Before starting the book, I thought it would be based around a girl who wants to get into MIT, but after reading the first 100 pages, I realized the story would include much more than just that. I enjoyed how the author combined multiple peoples' different issues together, relating the characters all in ways that I never would have thought of until after reading. Unfortunately, like everything else in the novel, I was not expecting the ending. I had different expectations of the ending ,and I kept thinking that something different would happen. But to my dismay, nothing did. Although I didn't enjoy the ending, I thought "Catalyst" was a terrific book for high school students to read, or anyone for that matter.
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damarisfelix15, December 5, 2011 (view all comments by damarisfelix15)
Catalyst by Laurie Halse Anderson is an inspiring novel about a rivalry transforming into friendship. The novel was written in first person, and it included a person vs. self conflict when Kate, the narrator, struggled to believe that she was not accepted into her dream school, MIT. Kate Malone is a senior straight-A science and math geek and daughter of the local reverend.
Everybody knows Kate as the good girl, but sometimes she wishes she was a bad Kate. MIT was the only college Kate applied to, assured that she would be accepted. Before Kate received the letter from MIT, her neighbor’s house burned down, and her enemy, Teri Litch, moved into her house and took over her room. Teri and her brother, Mikey, took control of the house as if it was theirs.
Kate believed she would soon be out of the house, supposing that she would be accepted to MIT. To Kate’s disappointment, MIT had rejected her application. When Kate received the response letter from MIT and found out she had been rejected, she thought of herself as a failure who would not accomplish anything in life. Kate’s life twisted out of control. She learned to be around Teri and her brother, but she constantly asked her father when the Litch’s house would be built. Kate was tired of taking Teri wherever she wanted and decided to help her construct the new house with the intention of having Teri move out faster.
One night while family members, construction workers, and neighbors sat outside the nearly constructed house, Mikey disappeared into the house. Teri ran inside the house and found Mikey’s handprints on the wall next to a light switch. Everybody was devastated and Mikey’s electrocution brought Teri and Kate closer in their friendship.
I enjoyed Catalyst because it dealt with unpredictable situations such as Kate’s depression and denial over MIT which were unexpected and brought the book in anticipated suspense, beginning with Kate’s decision towards her life. Catalyst is a valuable book for others to read because the characters resolve their indifferences in a unique way. Overall, Catalyst is an appropriate book for high school students.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780142400012
Author:
Anderson, Laurie Halse
Publisher:
Speak
Location:
New York, N.Y., U.S.A.
Subject:
Children's 12-Up - Fiction - General
Subject:
Social Situations - General
Subject:
Schools
Subject:
Death
Subject:
High schools
Subject:
Fathers and daughters
Subject:
Neighborliness
Subject:
Social Issues - General
Subject:
Girls & Women
Subject:
Children s Young Adult-Social Issue Fiction-General
Subject:
Children s Young Adult-Social Issue Fiction
Subject:
Boys / Men
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Paperback / softback
Series Volume:
98/17
Publication Date:
20030931
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
from 7
Language:
English
Pages:
288
Dimensions:
8.50x5.44x.65 in. .53 lbs.
Age Level:
from 12 up to AND UP

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Related Subjects

Children's » Featured Titles
Children's » General
Children's » Sale Books
Children's » Situations » General
Young Adult » Fiction » Social Issues » Death and Dying
Young Adult » General

Catalyst Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$5.50 In Stock
Product details 288 pages Speak - English 9780142400012 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Teens will take to Kate instantly....the universal obstacles she faces and the realistic outcome will likely hold readers' attention."
"Review" by , "[A]nything by this author is well worth reading. The chemistry metaphor is cleverly employed throughout, and readers will quickly become caught up in Kate's and Teri's dramas and struggles."
"Review" by , "Intelligently written with multi-dimensional characters that replay in one's mind, this complex, contemporary story carries much of the intensity and harshness of Speak (2000). It confronts moral issues, religious conundrums, and the dynamics of emotions in young adult lives as two girls driven by the past and present realize their impact on the future."
"Synopsis" by , From the author of Speak comes a novel that confronts the conundrum of young adult life. Kate manages her life by organizing it as logically as the periodic table. She can handle it all — or so she thinks. Then things dramatically change.
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