Author: Swati Avasthi
Hardcover, 280 pages
Published March 9th 2010
by Knopf Books for Young Readers
Fans of Matthew Quick and Charles Beniot
After being kicked out of his home sixteen year old Jace Witherspoon is journeying from his home in Chicago to Albuquerque. Jace’s father, a well-known judge, is verbally and physically abusive to his family. One night Jace hit his father without being provoked and is thrown out of the house. He decides to find a home and a new life with his older brother, Christian.
After college Christian left his whole life behind him. He left behind his abusive father, his battered mother, his little brother, and even his last name. So when Jace shows up on Christian Marshall’s doorstep his is scared to open the wounds of Christian Witherspoon.
Wow, this book is very thought provoking. I think it’s a good book for teens that have functional families to read. It will show them they are blessed. This book also shows that just because a family is well off doesn’t mean they don’t have issues.
· I enjoyed Jace and Christian’s relationship. I like how it is obvious that they are both making an effort. They both have to compromise to grow as brothers.
· Mirriam is Christian’s older girlfriend; she is an English teacher and has taken many psychology and social work classes. I went back and forth on whether or not liked her. At first she seems like she is judging Jace, then she began to act like a surrogate mother. She finally calms down and become an encouraging figure in Jace’s life.
· I like how Jace and Christian are so different. They deal with their abuse in very different ways. I think that’s important for readers who have been abused, because I feel like they could relate to either Jace or Christian.
· It was so painful to see how badly Jace wanted to believe that his mother wanted saving, and how Christian just cut her out of his life when he left.
· Some of the choices that Jace admits to making are really hard to read about. I want a protagonist that is nearly flawless and Jace isn’t that.
· Okay, this might just be me, but I hate that Christian changed their last name to Marshall. Marshall is the name of a famous judge, and Christian’s father is a judge. So, even though he doesn’t bare his father’s name, his name still pays respect to his father. It just irks me that he didn’t change it to a famous runner’s name because he uses running as an escape.