Saturday, February 24, 2007
This book is a series of interrelated poems. At first it can be confusing – sometimes you can tell who the speaker is, sometimes not. But by the end of the book the amazing way these poems fit together is revealed and you realize that you know who all these kids are. As soon as I finished it, I went back to read it again and it was even better the second time – because it was easier to keep everyone straight in my mind. The language itself isn’t hard at all – these people talk like people really talk. And the way they relate to each other is fascinating.
I didn’t used to like books that were written as poems. It kind of seems like cheating. The writer gets credit for writing a whole book and they are using about a third of the number of words as a “real writer” would. But sometimes it really works. This is one of those times.
If you like this I would highly recommend KESHIA’S HOUSE by Helen Frost. Sondra Sohnes is another good poetry/novel writer. My favorite of hers is ONE OF THOSE HIDEOUS BOOKS WHERE THE MOTHER DIES. I also liked BURNED by Ellen Hopkins, but it is an emotional roller coaster of a book, so don’t say you weren’t warned!