Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie

8 out of 10

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. With statement like that, you may be wondering why the 8, and not 9 or 10. Well, I don't have any concrete reasons. Let's just say that it's not my typical fare, and I'm not ready to give something so far out of my comfort zone a higher score.

This book brings me back to the days of middle school. I was in my high school band, and I can really identify with music as an escape. Sonnenblick writes this very captivatingly, and it was a surprising read for me.

I think Frank McCourt says it perfectly: "A brave book...Jordan Sonnenblick carries it off with such charm and elan, you forget for a moment your heart is breaking."

I typically don't hold much stock with back-of-the-book critic quotes, but this really summed it up for me. The main character is struggling with something incredibly difficult to understand while at the same time trying to get through life.

The main character's younger brother gets cancer, but I think Sonnenblick handled it in a totally new way. Your heart really is breaking for the little boy and the family, but the story is written so well that it isn't depressing at all. It really does become a story of hope, family and growth. It's a pretty heartwarming coming-of-age, and there's even a little romance in there.

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