Monday, February 22, 2010

Once more, with feeling

It was Molly who drew the line. I know this. Before I even open the tattered cover, I know this is the very first thing I will be told. And I know exactly where it will lead. And everything that will follow.

But I open the cover anyway, settle into my chair, and begin reading.

I've read Lois Lowry's A Summer to Die at least once a year since the fourth grade. Sometimes (usually) more. I blame Meg for this. Meg (Molly's younger sister), somehow, got me long before I was ever able to articulate "me" on my own. Long before I realized that I should articulate "me"on my own.

When I read "being both determined and unsure at the same time is what makes me the way I am, I think: hasty, impetuous, sometimes angry over nothing, often miserable about everything," and only three pages into the book, no less, I knew my fourth grade self had found a kindred soul in Meg Chalmers. The girl who felt most comfortable behind her camera's lens, who wanted the familiarity of home, who envied her older sister, who craved a tiny little space just for herself, who was unsure and strong all at the same time.

She does what needs to be done. She handles the situations she must. She learns to love who she is.

Maybe I wasn't exactly like her, but I could see glimpses of myself in her. I aspired to her.

Maybe I still do.

And when Will Banks calls her beautiful, I never fail to cry.


tell it to me tuesdays


Kirsten said...

That makes a good book - identifying with a character.

Lyndsay said...

This was one of the few (6? 8?) books that I rescued from my parent's house before they purged all my childhood stuff.
It's upstairs right now, and now I want to read it.
Oh there will be tears.

Lyndsay said...


Jade @ Tasting Grace said...

Whoa, I've not heard of that book, but you have me totally sold! I'm going to have to check it out!

Heart2Heart said...

What a great way to review a book! Loving this!

Love and Hugs ~ Kat

Stacia said...

This is exactly how I felt about Stephanie in Judy Blume's "Just as Long as We're Together." Man, I loved that book.

Jessica Monte said...

Your prose is as delicious as chocolate. And enticing too. I want to read this now!

mrs mediocrity said...

you are a great writer, I love your style. And the chocolate helps too

JadeLD said...

I've never heard of this book but it sounds great, I'll have to look it up.