Tuesday, February 15, 2011
A little update on my year of reading what I want...it totally rocks. Proof positive was this book. I'd finished The Cypress House and was shopping my bookshelves, specifically the stack of beauties I'd obtained from SIBA last fall. Ah! A YA novel, just what I needed! So I started thumbing through the pages, to get a feel for it, and ended up finishing it in two hours. Serious impact, minimal time investment. This is one you should all read.
Synopsis: Sixteen-year-old Liz is a photography genius, destined for journalistic success. Her forever-best is Kate, a talented dancer. They've been friends since childhood, and they couldn't imagine a day where they wouldn't always have their Saturday Night Slumber, their Friday nights at Salvatore's pizzeria, and be there for each other through thick and thin.
Shockingly, however, that day comes. Kate avoids Liz at every turn, refuses to talk to her or even look her in the eyes. When Kate finally reveals to Liz what is troubling her, Kate's world implodes...her family is devastated, and she stands to lose everything that is important in her life.
In this emotionally-wrought debut, written in free verse, Marcus brings us nose-to-nose with a very serious, very prevalent issue in society today.
My thoughts: This free verse thing is new to me. I first experienced it recently with "Song of the Sparrow", and found it very easy to read and very impactful in its sparseness and simplicity. Why haven't I tried this before? It's wonderful! Marcus employs this method of prose so skillfully, it nearly brings you to tears. Her chapters are short and each have titles, like little journal entries or shapshots. You'd think, then, that the content would be superficial, but that couldn't be further from the truth.
Marcus has chosen a topic that has been covered before, but it doesn't make it any less raw for those involved, or for the readers. (And no, I'm not telling! This story deserves to be protected!) And she NAILS it. All of it...the emotions, the repercussions, the distraught, confused, angry voice of the teenage narrator. Each entry a sucker punch to the gut, leaving you gasping for breath, but turning the pages faster and faster.
I'd call this one a no-brainer. Get it, read it in one sitting, then sit back in awe and wonder at how this debut author has got it all going on.
5 out of 5 stars