Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Revenge OF A Band Geek Gone Bad by Naomi Rabinowitz

Naomi Rabinowitz


Shy, overweight Melinda Rhodes' sophomore year of high school isn't going so well. Her mother mocks her weight. She spends her weekends holed up in her room making what her friend calls "Freaky eyeball paintings." Her pants split in the middle of school, earning her the nickname, "Moolinda." She then loses first chair flute in band to Kathy Meadows, the pretty and popular mean girl who's tormented Mel for years. 

Her luck changes when she catches the eye of sexy hottie Josh Kowalski, a rebellious trumpet prodigy and class clown. Josh has also been hurt by Kathy and asks Melinda to help take Kathy down. Mel figures that she has nothing to lose ... and Josh is adorable with gorgeous blue eyes and a winning smile. She agrees to team up with him and looks forward to finally getting back at her rival.

At first, the pair's pranks against Kathy are silly, and as they work together, Mel comes out of her shell. Wild, impulsive Josh gets her to do things she'd never done before and Mel enjoys being a bad girl. Even better, she and Josh fall in love and their teen romance blossoms.

However, as their schemes become more involved and dangerous, Mel begins to question her loyalty to Josh -- and is surprised to find how dark her dark side really is. Just how far will she be willing to go to get what she wants -- and is keepng Josh really worth the risk of going against her beliefs?



Mr. Francis' reign of terror is something of a legend in Sequoia High, hell on all of Long Island. Play a wrong note and he won't just criticize you; he'll scream until he turns beet red. Mess up right before a concert and forget about it, he'll throw a music stand at you. Rumor even has it that he once tried to strangle a player with a saxophone neck strap after the poor student dropped his instrument during a performance. But if this is true, the school doesn't seem to care since Mr. Francis is still employed. It could be because his band has won top honors in the New York state competition for 12 years running.

For the most part, he likes me since I practice and get the notes right. Still, the last thing I wanted to do was get on his bad side. None of us did. So without hesitating we lifted our instruments, getting ready to play.


You know those embarrassing moments that make you cringe when you were in high school, well as soon as I began this book it resurfaced.  In fact, I could totally relate to a few of them which endeared quiet and plus size Melinda Rhodes who is a sophomore just trying to find her place.  The problem is as soon as she makes strides little things happen that derail her process.  Enter Josh Kowalski, whose rebellious nature and talent at the trumpet makes him a target by first chair Kathy Meadows.

Kathy is everything Melinda is not, but when Josh and Melinda collaborate to get revenge on the popular Kathy everything changes.  Silly pranks get more and more outrageous and all of the sudden the Melinda of the past has come out of her shell, the problem is the things they are doing are making her wrestle with her conscious.

I thought this completely was believable, the emotions swirling were so spot on from the uncertainty you feel when trying to find yourself.  Excellent story and entertaining to boot.

Naomi Rabinowitz has always loved being creative. Raised in Nesconset, NY -- a suburb on Long Island -- she was introduced to the arts at an early age. Her mother, Joyce, is a pianist; her father, Melvin, plays piano and guitar; her grandmother, Esther, was a talented knitter; her late grandfather, Morris, was a violinist; her late great uncle, Sid Robin, was a well-known jazz musician, who penned the lyrics to the popular big band hit, "Undecided."

Naomi's parents, who were both teachers, frequently took her to museums and concerts. During their summers off, her family traveled. By the time she was 15, Naomi had been to several European countries, as well as China, Japan, Israel, Egypt, Russia and Mexico.

Naomi's love for writing emerged when she was in the second grade and her poem, "The Four Seasons," won first prize in a local literary competition. She became interested in journalism in junior high when her English class was selected to write for Newsday's "Kidsday" column. 

She had as much passion for music. Though she began playing piano when she was three, she switched to her "true" instrument, the flute, when she was nine and eventually added tenor sax and clarinet to her list so that she could play in jazz band. She performed in almost every musical group from wind ensemble to orchestra (but never marching band!). In 2008, she released her jazz album FLUTE PATH.

Naomi received a B.A. in English from Binghamton University and an M.A. in magazine journalism from Syracuse University. From 1998-2012, she worked as a reporter/editor for national TV magazine Soap Opera Digest.

These days, Naomi writes, plays jazz flute and designs jewelry for her businesses Naomi's Designs and MayaGirl Creations. She lives in Queens, NY with her husband, Jonathan, and their cat, Maya.

*Book purchase link on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009NNXUJI
* Twitter: @NaomiRDesigns


  1. Thanks so much for the great review! I really appreciate you taking the time to read and critique my work!