I've only actually done a few book reviews and yet here I am, only a month after writing one on Wintergirls, writing another post on a book by Laurie Halse Anderson. I have read 7 books now of Laurie's books, 6 of which were her Young Adult novels. Do you think she might be a favorite of mine?
The Impossible Knife of Memory tells of Hayley Kinkaid and her father, a veteran who struggles with the memories of war and suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. Each day is a challenge to them both. Hayley and her father have moved back into Hayley's grandmother's house and her father is forcing her, after six years of homeschooling on the road, to go to the public school for her senior year. This is where she meets Finn, the exquisitely charming young man, who tutors her in math and while the relationship is not easy, it offers her a possibility of normalcy and the hope of trusting someone again. Finn has his own family problems as does Gracie, her best friend which offers engaging subplots that demonstrate the true dynamics of what a teenager in this day and age can have on their plates to deal with.
The first person narration through Hayley's point of view is also interestingly interspersed with the flashbacks being experienced by Hayley's father, Andy, allowing us to know the trauma he has suffered through and is still suffering from. Once again, Laurie Halse Anderson pulls the reader in from page one. The story is intense, enabling you to feel as though you are in the house with Hayley watching her drunken father and experiencing their pain first hand or sitting at the edge of the quarry...
What Laurie Halse Anderson books have you read? What are your thoughts about this gifted author? What other books have you read that pull you in and make you feel like your part of the story?