A book arrived at the library that I didn’t remember ordering, or even how I came across it in the first place. It is about loss and grief, which in many guises would be a downer, but not this. Really, not.
Lennie’s sister Bailey has died, and the family is heartbroken. Then Lennie
falls head over heels in love with the dreamy Joe Fontaine and we have a heady
cocktail of grief and joy, leading to confusion and guilt.
This is a fabulous Push and Pull story, where
Lennie has to reconcile herself with what has happened and to which extent she stays
with the past or moves on to the future. Of course this makes up a considerable
part of Lennie’s guilt; how can she be happy considering what has happened?
The plot feels deliciously simple, but there are of course various layers, all of which feel so very realistic yet still quirky. (I
don’t want to give away any spoilers, but there is music, a triangle and hidden
this novel very high up in my pile of books I have to own, and also stops it
from being a downer is- *drumroll* - The Voice. It is a natural YA voice with a fantastic exuberance
that cannot be quashed by the grief. It is so infectious that you end up
reading a story about heartbreak with a whopping great smile on your face. (Or maybe
that was just me.)
How clever is that -a book about a toppling grief that is full of joy and an absolute pleasure to read? Utterly skillful.