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This Book Is Not Yet Rated

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The Green Street Cinema has always been a sanctuary for Ethan. Maybe it's because movies help him make sense of real life, or maybe it's because the cinema is the one place he can go to still feel close to his dad, a film professor who died three years ago. Either way, it's a place worth fighting for, especially when developers threaten to tear it down to build a luxury co The Green Street Cinema has always been a sanctuary for Ethan. Maybe it's because movies help him make sense of real life, or maybe it's because the cinema is the one place he can go to still feel close to his dad, a film professor who died three years ago. Either way, it's a place worth fighting for, especially when developers threaten to tear it down to build a luxury condos. They say it's structurally unsound and riddled with health code violations. They clearly don't understand that the crumbling columns and even Brando, the giant rat with a taste for sour patch kids, are a part of the fabric of this place that holds together the misfits and the dreamers of the changing neighborhood the cinema house has served for so many years. Now it's up to the employees of the Green Street Cinema--Sweet Lou the organist with a penchant for not-so-sweet language; Anjo the projectionist, nicknamed the Oracle for her opaque-but-always-true proclamations; Griffin and Lucas who work the concessions, if they work at all; and Ethan, known as "Wendy," the leader of these Lost Boys--to save the place they love. It's going to take a movie miracle if the Green Street is going to have a happy ending. And when Raina, Ethan's oldest friend (and possible soul mate?), comes back home from Hollywood where she's been starring in B-movies about time-traveling cats, Ethan thinks that miracle just may have been delivered. But life and love aren't always like the movies. And when the employees of the Green Street ask what happens in the end to the Lost Boys, Ethan has to share three words he's not been ready to say.


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The Green Street Cinema has always been a sanctuary for Ethan. Maybe it's because movies help him make sense of real life, or maybe it's because the cinema is the one place he can go to still feel close to his dad, a film professor who died three years ago. Either way, it's a place worth fighting for, especially when developers threaten to tear it down to build a luxury co The Green Street Cinema has always been a sanctuary for Ethan. Maybe it's because movies help him make sense of real life, or maybe it's because the cinema is the one place he can go to still feel close to his dad, a film professor who died three years ago. Either way, it's a place worth fighting for, especially when developers threaten to tear it down to build a luxury condos. They say it's structurally unsound and riddled with health code violations. They clearly don't understand that the crumbling columns and even Brando, the giant rat with a taste for sour patch kids, are a part of the fabric of this place that holds together the misfits and the dreamers of the changing neighborhood the cinema house has served for so many years. Now it's up to the employees of the Green Street Cinema--Sweet Lou the organist with a penchant for not-so-sweet language; Anjo the projectionist, nicknamed the Oracle for her opaque-but-always-true proclamations; Griffin and Lucas who work the concessions, if they work at all; and Ethan, known as "Wendy," the leader of these Lost Boys--to save the place they love. It's going to take a movie miracle if the Green Street is going to have a happy ending. And when Raina, Ethan's oldest friend (and possible soul mate?), comes back home from Hollywood where she's been starring in B-movies about time-traveling cats, Ethan thinks that miracle just may have been delivered. But life and love aren't always like the movies. And when the employees of the Green Street ask what happens in the end to the Lost Boys, Ethan has to share three words he's not been ready to say.

30 review for This Book Is Not Yet Rated

  1. 5 out of 5

    Lola

    Character-driven stories rock. They really do. Because if you like the characters, you most likely end up caring about them, and if you care about them, then you care about what happens TO them and AROUND them and to the people in their lives. Even if the storyline doesn’t blow you away, you’re still having a pleasant time in the company of these people you now care about and want to make your family. I loved Ethan. I loved him from the very beginning. He’s succinct. He’s not one to use 1000 wor Character-driven stories rock. They really do. Because if you like the characters, you most likely end up caring about them, and if you care about them, then you care about what happens TO them and AROUND them and to the people in their lives. Even if the storyline doesn’t blow you away, you’re still having a pleasant time in the company of these people you now care about and want to make your family. I loved Ethan. I loved him from the very beginning. He’s succinct. He’s not one to use 1000 words to say something. Following his train of thoughts was very easy and I could not resist his humour. If only more real life guys were like him I’d probably talk to guys more often. He and I connected, ya know? But I also liked Raina, his love-interest and best friend (and a movie star). So no competition. (Can’t compete with that anyway…) The reason why this is a character-driven book is that not much actually happens in the story. Conversation is much more highlighted than action or scenes that lead to multiple events. In space, the story takes place at and around the little cinematic complex on Green Street called The Green Street Cinema because that’s where Ethan used to work before it was put down for demolition. Still, nothing is set in stone yet, so Ethan and his crew are trying to stop that from happening. But at some point you realize The Green Street is a symbol, something that reminds Ethan of his late father, and Ethan needs to focus on his relationships more than on a place that, yes, has brought people together for a common love of little-known movies but that doesn’t have to be the reason for keeping those people connected to one another. I’m curious about the author’s previous releases now. If the humour is the same, there’s no reason why I shouldn’t enjoy them. Blog | Youtube | Twitter | Instagram | Google+ | Bloglovin’

  2. 5 out of 5

    Carole (Carole's Random Life in Books)

    This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books. I really enjoyed reading this book. This book first got my attention with its eye-catching cover and great title. After reading the book's description, I knew that I had to give this book a try and I am glad that I did. Once I started reading this book, the pages seemed to fly by and before I knew I had finished the entire book in a single morning. It really was the perfect book to lose myself in for just a little while. Ethan loves m This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books. I really enjoyed reading this book. This book first got my attention with its eye-catching cover and great title. After reading the book's description, I knew that I had to give this book a try and I am glad that I did. Once I started reading this book, the pages seemed to fly by and before I knew I had finished the entire book in a single morning. It really was the perfect book to lose myself in for just a little while. Ethan loves movies. His life has been filled with movies and watches at least one movie every day. Ethan works at the small Green Street Cinema, which is not your average theatre. Ethan actually serves the role of manager at the theatre since the real boss has been missing in action for some time. This theatre plays lesser-known films and caters to a certain clientele and has more a few issues. Ethan was a great character. He has had a hard time dealing with his father's sudden death just a few years earlier. He has really been in a holding pattern with the cinema being his refuge. I liked Ethan more and more as the story progressed and I learned more of his history. It was great to see him start to deal with the things going on in his life. Ethan was best friends with a girl named Raina when he was younger. This was before she was discovered by an agent and was thrust into stardom. When she finds that fame isn't exactly what she wanted, she goes home and is suddenly back in her old friend's life. I liked Raina. She was really down to earth and had her own issues to deal with. I thought that Ethan and Raina were good for each other and loved how they came together to work on a problem. When the cinema is scheduled to close, Ethan and the rest of the crew work to find a way to keep it going. I loved the quirky group of characters that worked at the theatre. They were all very different but as a group, they worked well together. The cinema almost felt like another character with all of its flaws, including a rather large rodent issue. I would recommend this book to others. I thought that this was a very well written story about finding yourself while fighting for the things you care about and learning to move on. The book is filled with great movie quotes and references that add to the charm of the story. I would not hesitate to read more of Peter Bognanni's writing in the future. I received a review copy of this book from Penguin Publishing Group - Dial Books. Initial Thoughts I enjoyed this book. Ethan (or Wendy) was a great character and I really enjoyed getting to know him in this story. The group of characters working at this dying theatre were quirky and just a lot of fun. There were a lot of movie references, some I knew and some I didn't, that just seemed to work perfectly with the story. I thought that this was a wonderful story of finding something you love while you find yourself and learning to move on.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Stacee

    I absolutely loved the premise of this and was so excited to read it. I liked Ethan well enough. He’s sort of struggling and maybe a little stagnant in his life, but he was easy to root for at the start. There’s a pretty interesting set of characters here and yet at the same time, no one stood out. We didn’t get much backstory on anyone but Ethan. Plot wise, it was sort of boring. It was a lot of trying to figure things out with a very slow build until the end. The story didn’t go in the direct I absolutely loved the premise of this and was so excited to read it. I liked Ethan well enough. He’s sort of struggling and maybe a little stagnant in his life, but he was easy to root for at the start. There’s a pretty interesting set of characters here and yet at the same time, no one stood out. We didn’t get much backstory on anyone but Ethan. Plot wise, it was sort of boring. It was a lot of trying to figure things out with a very slow build until the end. The story didn’t go in the direction I was expecting, but I liked the ideas of personal growth and moving on. The movie set up info at the start of each chapter and the excessive paragraphs of movies being detailed pushed me out of the story every time and I found myself skimming. Overall, the found family is one of my favorites, especially when it’s a sort of group of misfits. Sadly, this story lacked a spark I was looking for. At the time I’m writing this, there are loads of high reviews, so it seems it just wasn’t for me. **Huge thanks to Dial Books for providing the arc free of charge**

  4. 4 out of 5

    madandelion

    This book was funnn.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Dalene

    I received this book in exchange for an honest review. I was really excited to read this book! A book about a local theater that could close down? A book where the person running that theater is a teenage boy who loves movies? I was so excited to start it, but I wasn't into it. It's okay, but it didn't go where I thought it would. I love movies but besides a quick one liner or just a mention of a movie, that was all we got when it came to movies, and the book is supposed to be about movies. I do I received this book in exchange for an honest review. I was really excited to read this book! A book about a local theater that could close down? A book where the person running that theater is a teenage boy who loves movies? I was so excited to start it, but I wasn't into it. It's okay, but it didn't go where I thought it would. I love movies but besides a quick one liner or just a mention of a movie, that was all we got when it came to movies, and the book is supposed to be about movies. I don't regret reading it, it was still enjoyable. But maybe I was just the wrong audience for it.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Kiki Cole

    Movie goers and movie fanatics...BEHOLD! This novel stars our very own 17 year old Ethan, movie extraordinaire and unofficial manager of a rundown movie theater. If you choose to delve into this book there will be no disappointment! This book is an endearing tale about saving the places that you love with dashes of comedy and hints of young romance. I am not an a movie fanatic, but I do love a great book movies aside and this was definitely one of those great books that deserves more hype. This Movie goers and movie fanatics...BEHOLD! This novel stars our very own 17 year old Ethan, movie extraordinaire and unofficial manager of a rundown movie theater. If you choose to delve into this book there will be no disappointment! This book is an endearing tale about saving the places that you love with dashes of comedy and hints of young romance. I am not an a movie fanatic, but I do love a great book movies aside and this was definitely one of those great books that deserves more hype. This novel comes out in April 2019 and I hope everyone will be on the look out for this quirky, touching story that brings out your inner geek.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Sara (A Gingerly Review)

    2.5 stars? The overall story was just alright. I felt bored at times but I enjoyed the narrator.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Joann

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This has so many movie references that I didn't even know half of the movies that were talked about but I loved Ethan and his dysfunctional work family!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Olivia & Lori (The Candid Cover)

    I really enjoyed Bognanni’s other novel, Things I’m Seeing Without You. He really seems to have the ability to tackle tough topics, yet keep an element of humour in his writing. I look forward to reading this coming-of-age story in the spring.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Dayla

    Review first appeared on my blog as part of my Music Mondays feature here. I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Peter Bognanni and I have an emotional past. Mind you, the author himself doesn’t know that. When his novel Things I’m Seeing Without You was first out in ARC format, I was fortunate enough to receive a copy via the publisher. It just so happened that when I was nearly halfway through, my family suffered a tragic loss. If any of you have read TISWY, then Review first appeared on my blog as part of my Music Mondays feature here. I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Peter Bognanni and I have an emotional past. Mind you, the author himself doesn’t know that. When his novel Things I’m Seeing Without You was first out in ARC format, I was fortunate enough to receive a copy via the publisher. It just so happened that when I was nearly halfway through, my family suffered a tragic loss. If any of you have read TISWY, then you know how sensitive the topic of that book is (if you haven’t, I recommend it with caution because of the aforementioned sensitive topic). Ever since that summer, Bognanni has held a special place in my heart. The title of his prior work is also an inspiration for a future tattoo that I want to get because it just speaks so well to those who’ve lost someone. With that long disclaimer-ish paragraph out of the way, let me say that This Book is Not Yet Rated is both very different from Bognanni’s prior work and still just as emotionally touching for me. Through witty and personable writing, Bognanni’s newest title will resonate with anyone who loves film, or has had a love for something that has greatly defined them growing up. Ethan is the manager at the old movie theatre, The Green Street Cinema, that used to feature films for his dad’s college students. Nicknamed Wendy by the lost boys who work alongside him, Ethan has been using the theatre as an escape from his grief after losing his dad three years before. He’s also conveniently avoiding the pressures of growing up. But when a new face pops up with the threat of shutting down the theatre, Ethan must question what the theatre really means to him and his crew. As if these pressures weren’t enough, Ethan’s old friend and crush return to his life after she’s suffered a breakdown of her own. Will Ethan be able to save his sanctuary and will his friendship ever recover from the past? For the most part, I enjoyed Ethan’s story and growth. I liked how his progress follows the obvious route that contemporary books usually take, but then gets derailed because life isn’t that simple. Bognanni shows us that anything important to us is worth the hard work. Simple solutions aren’t the answer and nothing in life is linear–despite how much we want to emulate film. And that’s one of the interesting things I noticed in this book: the parallels shown between film and life. In order to escape from the difficulties and unpredictable nature of life, Ethan submerges himself into the intricate world of film where most stories have storylines that follow patterns, or eventually lead to a climax of some sort–something controlled by a director and editor. Up until the theatre is threatened, Ethan has been living a predictable life. This “shake-up” is where the story deviates from being film-like. Or, to play devil’s advocate, it could even be argued that Ethan’s life becomes more film-like because of the abrupt changes he’s experiencing. This book being titled This Book Is Not Yet Rated is perfect because of all of the connections to film. The book itself is like a love story for film and its effect on people. I loved that at the beginning of every title Ethan explains various filmmaking terms that his dad must have taught him. His experience with movies makes the reader want to have a paper and pen ready to write down all of the recommendations. Raina, Ethan’s old best friend, is in film as well and knows all about the importance of film in life. Though she at times falls into the unfortunate trope of being a manic pixie dream girl (something that affected my overall rating for this book), Raina is the character who helps Ethan see that it’s okay to dare to want more. She pushes him to stand outside of his comfort zone, while also trying to figure her life out. While her conclusion in the story was a tad convenient (and a little under-developed), I did like the effect she had on Ethan. The other characters are like the perfect seasoning for an enjoyable storyline. They add flavour to a story that could have easily been boring or a little too formulaic. I loved that each had their own quirk that made up the feeling of a dysfunctional family. Their hijinks and commentary were some of my favourite moments in this book. Ethan on his own was at times depressing, so adding in these dynamic characters was a great touch. I do wish we’d have known a little more about them, but I’m happy we got to meet them regardless. The emotional aspect of this book that really hit me was the dad’s death. While we don’t actively get to meet him because this takes place three years after his passing, he is like an honorary character hidden in every page of the book. His presence is what drives Ethan to do better and it’s what made me connect to Ethan in the first place. I almost teared up when Ethan finally explains how he died and the little quirks they had together, because it was like reading about me and my dad. My negatives about this book would probably be the portrayal of Raina, the at-times one dimensional side characters, and the sometimes slowly paced writing. There were moments where I became stuck on a specific chapter and I felt drawn to other books. Despite the things I wasn’t a big fan of, I did really enjoy this book. I strongly recommend it for anyone who loves film and a story about how film can help us grow and understand the world. Also, it’s a read I’d recommend for anyone who’s ever had to grieve a loss because Bognanni always touches on the unspoken things that grieving people often experience, and how our lives are affected by the death of a loved one. Happy reading!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Stacy Fetters

    "It takes a little danger to come out on top. You have to take risks, act like it’s a matter of life and death!” Have you ever had something in your life that meant the world to you? Something that touches your soul and you would do anything to stop something bad from happening? Ethan feels that passionately about The Green Street Theatre. Ethan is manager of a small indie movie theatre and it’s his entire life. Him and his Dad would go there all the time and enjoy films that they couldn’t witness "It takes a little danger to come out on top. You have to take risks, act like it’s a matter of life and death!” Have you ever had something in your life that meant the world to you? Something that touches your soul and you would do anything to stop something bad from happening? Ethan feels that passionately about The Green Street Theatre. Ethan is manager of a small indie movie theatre and it’s his entire life. Him and his Dad would go there all the time and enjoy films that they couldn’t witness anywhere else. They did that right up until his Dad passed away. Nothing has been the same since his Dad passed and Ethan now puts all of his time and effort into this failing theatre. That is until they get an eviction notice. They want to turn that area into high-end apartments for the local college students. But Ethan is not going down without a fight. As this is all going on, his best-friend, Raina is back in town from LA. They were the best of friends growing up and then her movie career took off. He hasn’t seen or heard from her in years but the feelings for her are still overwhelming. Ethan, Raina, and the theatre crew come up with a plan to have one last hurrah to send off the theatre. Ethan soon realizes that real life isn’t always like the movies. This book had a strong synopsis but the execution was dull. I found myself being bored as time went out and nothing much stood out in the end. People keep trying to sell this as a contemporary romance and it honestly wasn’t. The romance was something that lurked in the dark shadows. This Book is Not Yet Rated was an okay read but I’ll never read it again. It’s not something that anyone needs to read more than once. Raina was such a great character with great attitude and I wish there was more her in this book. Ethan and Raina need a better romance because this one was just sad. Rest In Piece, Brando the Rat!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Chrissie Morrison

    Even for people who don't go to church (or some other house of worship), there is often a place to which they turn for comfort and solace. For me, it's any quiet place with lots of pillows and a warm blanket.  I like to make myself a little "nest" so I can cozy up to refresh my body and mind. My husband recharges his spirit by spending time in nature; most often, the Adirondack Mountains.  In this story, the Green Street Cinema is like church to Ethan.  Up until his father died, three years prio Even for people who don't go to church (or some other house of worship), there is often a place to which they turn for comfort and solace. For me, it's any quiet place with lots of pillows and a warm blanket.  I like to make myself a little "nest" so I can cozy up to refresh my body and mind. My husband recharges his spirit by spending time in nature; most often, the Adirondack Mountains.  In this story, the Green Street Cinema is like church to Ethan.  Up until his father died, three years prior, the Green Street was where they spent a lot of quality time.  Not only did they bond over the movies they watched, but they used their time together to talk about bigger things like "what it means to be human."  Since his father's death, Ethan began working at the Green Street -- and he even ended up becoming the de facto manager when Randy took off.  But the Green Street is in major trouble.  Aside from the major debts that can't be paid off with the minuscule ticket sales to the small group of cinephiles who frequent the theater, there are also some major structural problems and a rat infestation to contend with.  All of this is happening, of course, at the same time that his former best friend and crush, Raina, came back to town.  This literal girl next door seemed to fall off the face of the Earth when she was "discovered" by an agent and whisked away to make some cheesy blockbuster action/sci-fi movies.  Even when Ethan's father died, she didn't respond to any of his text messages and emails, so Ethan never expected to hear from her again.  But now she is back and seems to need his support to make it through a major breakdown. I loved the motley crew of workers from the theater -- the "Lost Boys" to Ethan's "Wendy" (the nickname that even appears on his name badge).  But, most of all, I really appreciated both Ethan and Raina's vulnerability and their willingness to admit that they didn't have all the answers.  It sometimes feels like young adult characters have their stuff together all too well and that they have a confidence and direction that don't feel all too natural.  (Or maybe I am just projecting my own uncertainty from my teen years and can't understand what it would be like to feel so self-assured?!?)  Either way, these characters felt very "real," as did their up-hill battle to save the Green Street from being demolished and replaced with luxury condos.  Happy Reading!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Kate

    This book was great! I loved the main characters and the quirky supporting cast. It will especially appeal to movie and A/V nerds, and I was one of these in high school and college, so it was a perfect match! While there is a (maybe?) romance, it is not a mushy love story. And there isn't a clear-cut ending, so some readers may be disappointed there. Ethan is the main character, a kid who graduated early (after the death of his father), and works as the manager of the art house movie theater wher This book was great! I loved the main characters and the quirky supporting cast. It will especially appeal to movie and A/V nerds, and I was one of these in high school and college, so it was a perfect match! While there is a (maybe?) romance, it is not a mushy love story. And there isn't a clear-cut ending, so some readers may be disappointed there. Ethan is the main character, a kid who graduated early (after the death of his father), and works as the manager of the art house movie theater where he and his father had so many memories. When the theater is threatened with demolition, Ethan's crush, Raina, returns to Minneapolis from her life as an actor in LA. This was a fast, enjoyable book that I recommend to teens and adults. My thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie

    I loved this book! I devoured this in a weekend and I laughed out loud while I did it. This is a book for film buffs. From the very beginning there are references to and quotes from classic films like Back to the Future, Gladiator, Rebel Without a Cause, and Citizen Kane. Many directors and their unique styles are referenced and applauded. Our main character, Ethan, is the teenage manager of a campus independent movie theater in danger of closing due to overwhelming debt and hazardous conditions I loved this book! I devoured this in a weekend and I laughed out loud while I did it. This is a book for film buffs. From the very beginning there are references to and quotes from classic films like Back to the Future, Gladiator, Rebel Without a Cause, and Citizen Kane. Many directors and their unique styles are referenced and applauded. Our main character, Ethan, is the teenage manager of a campus independent movie theater in danger of closing due to overwhelming debt and hazardous conditions. Ethan and his ragtag group of employees must try to find a way to save their beloved theater. I do wonder whether there would be too much background knowledge needed for the average teen reader, but I would encourage teens to give it a try anyway. There were a few foreign directors named in the book with whom I am not familiar, but Bognanni did a good job of explaining their style so I didn't feel like I was missing necessary background knowledge. I will be buying this one for my classroom. Note: a few instances of language, including the f-word.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    A thoroughly enjoyable, sweet read with a wonderful cast of characters. Definitely a High Fidelity vibe that I loved.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Yvonne Olson

    I'm not sure why I seem to have this problem, but I swear every YA contemporary I reasd reminds me so much of a YA contemporary I just read. This one wasn't as similar as some of the others I've dealt with, but I was constantly reminded of Rayne and Delilah's Midnight Matinee. They have similar tropes and characters that have similar thoughts. Either way, I really enjoyed this title. I just wish I could stop comparing things.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lindsey

    This fell so flat for me. I’m so disappointed.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Harriet Smith

    Great movie references, but ....

  19. 5 out of 5

    Melanie

    An adorable, fun read for any movie lovers. I loved that this had a male main character and the Green Street Cinema added so much charm to the story.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

    Okay. Not my favorite but mainly because I didn’t understand most of the classic movie references. It was well done and had some good moments. Just not for me.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Alexa

    I really enjoyed Peter Bognanni’s previous book, Things I'm Seeing Without You and it’s ultimately why I picked up this book in the first place. They’re completely different but similar in the way that Bognanni writes books that are easy to read and easy to get into... Review: http://bit.ly/2ZQDP2C

  22. 4 out of 5

    Shelby

    I really enjoyed this book. It was a wonderful coming of age story about realizing the people and experiences that make you, not necessarily the material things. It spoke a great message and it came across very well. I really liked Ethan, our main character, and we get a good look into his personality in the short time we follow his life in this book. I also loved the movie references and terms throughout, and I thought they made this a “love letter to film” of sorts. I liked Raina, our love int I really enjoyed this book. It was a wonderful coming of age story about realizing the people and experiences that make you, not necessarily the material things. It spoke a great message and it came across very well. I really liked Ethan, our main character, and we get a good look into his personality in the short time we follow his life in this book. I also loved the movie references and terms throughout, and I thought they made this a “love letter to film” of sorts. I liked Raina, our love interest/returning friend, but I felt her character was underdeveloped and a little flat. We hear her story and hear about her time traveling cat movie in LA, but she never felt realistic to me, and her movie seemed kind of ridiculous, not gonna lie, but that’s just a personal opinion and doesn’t really have anything to do with the actual story. This book has the occasional flashback, and at times I got so confused because the transitions weren’t written very well, but they served a great purpose overall when they were written right. I liked the supporting characters as well, but we could have gotten a little more depth with them because they were a bit flat as well. This problem was present with pretty much every character EXCEPT Ethan. Overall, an enjoyable contemporary that I’d recommend when it comes out!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Brianna Westervelt

    Yes, I really read this book in one day. Once I started reading it, I neglected everything else in my life. Well, okay, I did take time out to go to the gym and the grocery store, and watch a movie, but I was thinking about this book the whole time I wasn't reading it! If that's not an endorsement, then I don't know what is. P.S. Sweet Lou is the best octogenarian you will ever encounter in a YA novel. That is all.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Mel

    a sweet and beautiful contemporary book and coming of age story .

  25. 4 out of 5

    Debbie

    I'd give this book 4.5 stars, really, but it's not quite up to 5, I think. However, it's worth noting that I started this book at 8pm one night, slept for 6-7 hours, read it over breakfast again at 7am and finished it by 10am. I did not want to do anything else but read this book, eat, and sleep. [Small spoilers ahead.] Reasons I love this book: 1) This book has real people: Ethan, Raina, Ethan's mom, "the Oracle," even Ron. And they talk about their issues in healthy ways. I love seeing characters I'd give this book 4.5 stars, really, but it's not quite up to 5, I think. However, it's worth noting that I started this book at 8pm one night, slept for 6-7 hours, read it over breakfast again at 7am and finished it by 10am. I did not want to do anything else but read this book, eat, and sleep. [Small spoilers ahead.] Reasons I love this book: 1) This book has real people: Ethan, Raina, Ethan's mom, "the Oracle," even Ron. And they talk about their issues in healthy ways. I love seeing characters that do that because I think they're fabulous role models for the target audience for this book: teens. 2) The setting of the theater is written so well that it's basically a non-human character in the book. That's fabulous. 3) The between-chapter movie vocab tips made me think about how I can teach my high school students to write narratives better. 4) The ending is not neat and perfect, but it was satisfying. And could leave the door open for a sequel, but it doesn't have to. 5) All the awesome little moments that were human and funny and made me laugh out loud. Examples without context: dropping Milk Duds into the popcorn bag solemnly, Spandeau Ballet, shouting "We don't want the mozzarella sticks of the oppressor!", the fact that Dad's story and Mom's story differ, the new hockey pennant in the hallway. All beautiful and perfect and funny. 6) The massive truth bombs dropped throughout the book. And since I don't have a Kindle where I can highlight these, I'm documenting them below. p. 32-33 "But here's the thing... if you only see the same movies that everyone else does, if you only watch the same shows and read the same books, and listen to the same music that everyone else does, then you're only ever going to have the same ideas as everyone else. You're only going to see the world the way everyone else does. And sure there's a reason people like those things. They're entertaining and "fun." But they're also probably made to appeal to every single person on earth, and so they're also kind of bland and familiar and unchallenging. The Arby's of cultural offerings." p. 134 "Because most of the time, things are unpredictable and kind of scary. Everything's always changing, no matter what we do. But if we have rituals, we can fight that a little bit." p. 186 "Out of all the movies I saw when I was a kid, that's the one that sticks with me because it was when I first realized that movies were made by actual people. They didn't just show up on the screen from out of the blue. It took a group of determined fanatics to manifest them out of nothing." p. 284 "I was thinking that somehow, even after all the gut-wretching emotional films I'd seen, movies hadn't quite prepared me for the layers of actual heartbreak. Real-life emotions are weirder. Harder to pin down. I felt a little nauseous, but also hungry. Anxious and calm. I was really aware of my teeth for some reason. There was no music at all to tell me the precise moment I was supposed to realize this had all been temporary and it hasn't ended the way I wanted it to."

  26. 4 out of 5

    Athena

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. When you think of a book about movies, you probably wonder, "How would that even work?" That question can be answered if you read this simple, yet beautiful book. This Book Is Not Yet Rated is a book that explores the feeling of leaving something behind as you grow up and become the person you're going to be. It's not always easy, but it takes one thing away to be replaced with something better, if you play your cards right. Ethan is a very human character, always looking for escape from reality When you think of a book about movies, you probably wonder, "How would that even work?" That question can be answered if you read this simple, yet beautiful book. This Book Is Not Yet Rated is a book that explores the feeling of leaving something behind as you grow up and become the person you're going to be. It's not always easy, but it takes one thing away to be replaced with something better, if you play your cards right. Ethan is a very human character, always looking for escape from reality. This is something I can relate to, because I often have the feeling that reality leaves something to be desired. Hence all the books I read. And I like how the romantic element to the book didn't really blossom into anything. Ethan and Raina simply stayed friends. Nothing more. Which feels a lot more real than what happens in other contemporary novels. This time, instead of it supposedly being unrequited love, then turning out that isn't the case, it really was unrequited, which is a lot more relatable. Almost everyone has experienced unrequited love at least once in their lifetime. I myself have experienced it multiple times. It's just a part of life that people honestly need to see more. Not everything turns out to be sunshine and rainbows. Sometimes you have to endure some rain clouds before the sun can come out again. The theater that Ethan worked at and practically lived in, while it was important to him, it couldn't truly last forever, no matter what he did. He certainly tried to keep it, but it had quite honestly grown into something unhealthy for him and everyone else. It was time for him to move on, and this book moved through that process wonderfully. The film festival as a final goodbye was a beautiful thing that not everyone has the chance to do. Not everyone can have that final farewell. They don't realize what they have until it's gone, and I was glad to see that Ethan had a chance to make moving on easier for him. And that he wasn't alone. Even though he didn't have Raina in the way he wanted, he still had her there for support, which I really appreciated seeing. That was true friendship. Still really caring for each other even though things didn't work out in the way one or the other wanted. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and I think I will be recommending it to all of my friends if I possibly can. I suggest you do the same, because these are words everyone needs to hear at least once.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Sherry

    Wow, I love this book. The plot centers around the attempts of the narrator, Ethan, to save a decaying independent movie theater from demolition, but the story is more about the death of Ethan’s father and his inability to come to terms with his loss. That’s the reason the theater is so important to Ethan. It’s a place where the two of them shared their love of films, and losing the theater seems like losing his father all over again. But the theater closing may be a blessing in disguise, because Wow, I love this book. The plot centers around the attempts of the narrator, Ethan, to save a decaying independent movie theater from demolition, but the story is more about the death of Ethan’s father and his inability to come to terms with his loss. That’s the reason the theater is so important to Ethan. It’s a place where the two of them shared their love of films, and losing the theater seems like losing his father all over again. But the theater closing may be a blessing in disguise, because Ethan’s attempts to stop it help him learn how to move on from loss, how to recognize what’s important to hang onto and when it’s all right to let go. That description sounds like this would be a really heavy book to read, and at sometimes it is, but I laughed a lot, too. The author has a gift for writing funny scenes and quirky oddball characters. Ethan isn’t bad with a snarky line, either. Maybe my favorite bit of the novel is when an especially poignant moment between Ethan and the girl he likes, Raina, is interrupted by the discovery of a dead rat. Talk about destroying the mood! Pathos to comedy, at breakneck speed. Film buffs might especially appreciate this novel. A lot of great movies are referenced during the story. Some of the scenes and dialogue wouldn’t be out of place in a film, and it doesn’t surprise me that Bognanni’s first book was turned into a movie. An especially nice touch is “Ethan’s Glossary of Film Terms,” short descriptions of different aspects of film between chapters that serve commentary on the action. Be warned, though—this book doesn’t a classic Hollywood ending where the hero saves the day and gets the girl. If that’s your jam, you might not like where the story winds up. It’s more like an art film, which generally aren’t so tidy in terms of the conclusion. But that’s what makes them interesting, right? And while the ending here isn’t clear cut, it is hopeful. I’d highly recommend this for anyone who likes smart, well-written YA novels. And movies, of course! A copy of this book was provided through NetGalley for review; all opinions expressed are my own.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Jenn Bennington

    I’m not in any way impartial about this book. While I was not aware of the Acknowledgements at the books conclusion, I recognized that the Green St Cinema of the novel had to be modeled on the Oak St Cinema here in Minneapolis. I tweeted the author to see if I was right and he immediately tweeted back, confirming my assumption. It seems that Peter Bognanni and I just missed each other’s window at the Oak St. In fact, while working one slow Sunday (some sort of Manga film was playing), I met an a I’m not in any way impartial about this book. While I was not aware of the Acknowledgements at the books conclusion, I recognized that the Green St Cinema of the novel had to be modeled on the Oak St Cinema here in Minneapolis. I tweeted the author to see if I was right and he immediately tweeted back, confirming my assumption. It seems that Peter Bognanni and I just missed each other’s window at the Oak St. In fact, while working one slow Sunday (some sort of Manga film was playing), I met an amazing guy who was volunteering. Three years later, we were married at Oak St (yes, people threw popcorn instead of rice). That was 20 years ago next month. The Oak St is gone now - yep, it was torn down to make way for more posh student housing - but we were able to take our son there when he was small - The Red Balloon & Black Stallion were showing, if memory serves. Our son is now 6’4 and 16 years old. I still miss the Oak St every time we drive by. So that’s all very interesting, but isn’t this supposed to be a book review? Why yes, yes it is. I loved the book. The characters were quirky, but not stereotypical. The dark place that our main character is inhabiting at the books beginning is somehow both very real and somehow periodically hilarious. It’s a book about moving ahead with life when you feel the most stuck and floundering in a never-ending loop of blah. In short, I think anyone who struggled through their early twenties in a perpetual state of fear about the impending loneliness that is always associated with inevitable change, will recognize themselves in Bognanni’s Minneapolis. Of course, that’s easy for me to say since we do, in fact, inhabit the same world, even if it’s been a while. Thank you, Peter, for bringing back great memories, and allowing me to recognize Ethan’s struggle as my own. And for helping me appreciate what comes next.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Sandra Porter

    Don't know if this book is everyone's cup of tea, but it really spoke to me (it made me put down two other books I was reading and read this one straight through): about how life goes on, how you first love molds you, about change, and a lot about movies. I think if you are movie buff, especially old quirky movies, like Harold and Maude (one of my favorites) the may be your book. At the beginning of some chapters the author starts with "Ethan's Glossary of Film Terms." I didn't catch it at first Don't know if this book is everyone's cup of tea, but it really spoke to me (it made me put down two other books I was reading and read this one straight through): about how life goes on, how you first love molds you, about change, and a lot about movies. I think if you are movie buff, especially old quirky movies, like Harold and Maude (one of my favorites) the may be your book. At the beginning of some chapters the author starts with "Ethan's Glossary of Film Terms." I didn't catch it at first, but he was using this for transitions into the next chapter. One of the transitions is about road trips, and I love road trip movies. Interesting. Also , my favorite actor from the 60's, Steve McQueen, plays a part. The only place Ethan feels at home, now, is at the Green Street Cinema. Then comes that faithful day when someone wants to "revitalize" the neighborhood and the cinema is in the way. Ethan is lost. He is still reeling because of his Dad's death, his first love gone, and now the cinema. A few of the things that I liked about this book was that the characters all seems very believable, yet quirky. The story was simple, yet profound. The relationships messy, yet believable. "But who isn't in trouble? That's what I wanted to know. Life, it seems to me, was mostly trouble." -Ethan. "Scorsese said he was inspired to make the film [Raging Bull] because in life,'the hardest opponent you face is yourself.'" -Ethan's Dad. AND I will never watch a movie again without really concentrating on the last spoken line in the movie. I want to go out and watch or rewatch all of these movies: The Hobbit, movies by director Ozu, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Rear Window,Gladiator, and that's just from the first 15 pages!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Nataly

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Ehhhh this book just didn’t do it for me. It was from the point of view of “Wendy” or Ethan, this kid who somehow has sole responsibility of a theater and it’s going to close down soon and the whole plot is him saving the theater and doing dumb shit to revive it and he doesn’t even save it in the end and just gives up basically... First of all - didn’t get the Wendy name. Found it pointless and confusing. Also how is this kid who’s still in high school managing a whole ass dying theater and still Ehhhh this book just didn’t do it for me. It was from the point of view of “Wendy” or Ethan, this kid who somehow has sole responsibility of a theater and it’s going to close down soon and the whole plot is him saving the theater and doing dumb shit to revive it and he doesn’t even save it in the end and just gives up basically... First of all - didn’t get the Wendy name. Found it pointless and confusing. Also how is this kid who’s still in high school managing a whole ass dying theater and still has employees double his age who are putting all the blame and responsibility on him to keep this dump open!? Like rat infestation and asbestos is a 17 year olds issue to deal with??? Also fuck Raina- she left Ethan when he needed her and just walked in like yeah I loved you and mooches off of his issue for her own publicity stunt and then leaves him again to go back to LA. I found her really pointless to the whole story. All the employees were annoying and bled into each other since the two guys seemed to be potheads and I guess one was illegal?? And then there was the “oracle” who was like old but also in love w/ Ethan’s dad??? Just bad. Overall not it, I’m not sure if I’m too old to understand the plot line (don’t get me wrong the whole dad backstory was sad but also - how does one suddenly die over a fever and nobody questions it? ) everything was kindve glossed over and I was just so glad it was over when I finished

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