How to Be Brave, by E. Katherine Kottaras (book review) – live large is mom’s last request

book cover of How to Be Brave by E Katherine Kottaras published by St Martin Griffin Teen | recommended on BooksYALove.comA challenge from her late mom,
a best friend willing to do anything,
a chance for an epic senior year… and maybe love.

Meet Georgia (and snarky best pal Liss) in this excerpt, courtesy of the publisher – check out her Do Everything Be Brave List, then get the whole story of how she tackles the list, copes with heartbreak, and struggles with body image.

This isn’t one of those “my mom died and I will mope through life until someone else makes it worthwhile” stories. Georgia creates her own ups (and downs), although Liss and Evelyn are with her for many things.

I loved the way that Georgia would reframe negatives into possibilities (although not always with ease) and the winding routes that her thoughts took as time passed, too.

Don’t miss the interactive book trailer so you can help Georgia ‘be brave’ –

What’s on your Do Awesome Stuff list?

Book info: How to Be Brave / E. Katherine Kottaras.  St. Martins Press/ Griffin Teen, 2015. [author site]  [publisher site]  [interactive book trailer] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

My book talk: Inspired by her late mother’s letter, Georgia makes a list of daring things to do during her senior year, little realizing how much she and her friendships and her dreams will change along the way.

Her Greek-American father tries to keep their Chicago restaurant going despite his grief, and Georgia tries to break out of her shell by following Mom’s advice to “go do anything you like – in fact, do everything” with an I Want to Live Life list – including jump out of a plane, cut class (no, she never has), learn how to draw like Mom, ask him out…

So she and best friend Liss and new pal Evelyn start in the middle of the list and work their way around to tribal dancing (and maybe Georgia will ask Daniel out, some time).

But one ill-timed party fractures their friendship, and senior year’s zip turns to blah.

Is it worth doing the adventures on her list alone?
Can she ever get Liss back on her side?
Will she be brave enough to leave behind her mom’s artistic style?

Change is scary, but staying the same on-the-sidelines-of-life chubby girl is not an option for Georgia after Mom’s last request entreating her to learn How to Be Brave.
(One of 8,000 books recommended on

What do you think?

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