Curious about the lives of inner-city teenagers, journalist Rathbone, who has written for the New York Daily News and the Miami Herald, decided to spend the 1994-95 school year as an observer in New York's West Side High School, composed largely of students that even the worst schools had rejected. Throughout the school year, Rathbone spent time in Principal Ed Reynolds's "Family Group," a sort of daily homeroom/discussion period at the school. Ed's group contained some of the worst students. Rathbone could relate to a number of the kids, having grown up in an at-risk situation herself, but the lives of many others at West Side often overwhelmed her. Rathbone's book is about more than education. Along with detailing the daily lives of the students, she provides history and information about New York City neighborhoods the gangs, drugs, depression as well as insight into a world many readers would like to believe doesn't exist. Recommended for most libraries, especially those with an emphasis on education. Terry Christner, Hutchinson P.L., Kan.Rathbone, Cristina is the author of 'On the Outside Looking in A Year in an Inner-City High School', published 1999 under ISBN 9780871137364 and ISBN 0871137364.