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Reviewed by Pikasho Deka for Readers' Favorite
Andrew J. Brandt's Mix Tape for the End of the World is a coming-of-age tale about growing up and finding friends and first love. Derrick Townsend is a high school sophomore who's trying to get accustomed to the town of Mount Vernon and his new school after his family's relocation from Stillwater. A fan of Seattle's early '90s era grunge rock scene, Derrick feels overjoyed when his soon-to-be stepfather Doug Davis gifts him a Fender Telecaster. Meanwhile, Derrick develops a crush on his next-door neighbor and captain of his school's tennis team, Haley Swanson. After striking up a friendship with classmate AJ, the two of them soon start a rock band by the name of Stealth in Derrick's garage in the hopes of winning the school talent show.
Filled with nostalgia and heart, Mix Tape for the End of the World takes you back through the years to a time of wonder and dreams. Andrew J. Brandt's heartwarming tale is about growing up, forming friendships, and discovering first love in your teenage years that you can't help but reminiscence about. The characters feel well fleshed-out and easy to relate to, which makes them absorbing to read. I enjoyed them all but found Derrick, AJ, and Haley to be my personal favorites of the bunch. The pacing of the plot suits the slice-of-life style narrative of the story. I immensely enjoyed Mix Tape for the End of the World. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys coming-of-age stories about growing up.