Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Saturday, January 10, 2015

The Impossible Knife of Memory by Laurie Halse Anderson...

How I Heard About It:  I knew of this book via Twitter and saw it many times on the shelf in my local bookstore.  Once I set my 2015 reading goal including a young adult novel per week, I bought this book to be my first YA read for the year 2015.  

What It Is About:   Haley is a high school student living with her father.  Her father suffers from PTSD so life isn't easy with him.  The two of them had been on the road while he was a truck driver, but after the decision to return home, Haley and her dad settle back into his childhood home.  Haley doesn't make school easy on herself by getting into trouble, not doing her homework, and many other things not to "fit" in.  After meeting Finn, a boy at her high school, life starts to become a bit more normal for Haley.  She juggles her new life at school and keeping things together for herself and her dad at home.  She never knows what she is going to get each day.  Some days her father drinks too much, does drugs, or just doesn't get out of bed.  When his old girlfriend returns, Haley isn't so sure she can handle things anymore.  At least not on her own.  With the help of Finn, and a couple other friends, Haley has to face her future, by facing her past as a child and the truth of what is going on with her dad because of his days in the war.  

What I Thought Of It:  This was such an enjoyable read.  Once I started the book I couldn't put it down.  It was the perfect novel to start the year with.  I so enjoyed the character of Haley and became emotionally invested with what she was going through.  There were so many moments when I was angry with her father for the decisions he was making, but kept trying to remind myself there was good reasons for his behavior.  One of my favorite characters was Finn and I got such a kick out of him.  There were many surprising moments along the way which kept me on the "edge of my seat" while reading.

Who Should Read It:   This book is classified as Young Adult and the subject matter is quite mature.  I would definitely say it is geared toward the high school reader or above.  The plot if gripping and I know high school readers would be engaged with it.  I also think many adult readers would enjoy the story just as much as I did.  I'm hoping to read more of this author's books throughout the year as I read a YA book each week.  Happy Reading!  

Rating:  5 STARS out of 5 Stars

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