Friday, July 29, 2011
This book was such a pleasant, amazing surprise. As an author who writes issue-driven fiction, I thought that Gail Giles executed RIGHT BEHIND YOU with perfection.
RIGHT BEHIND YOU is the story of Kip--a teen who, when he was nine, murdered a seven-year-old neighbor. I wondered, when I first picked up the book, how Gail Giles could make Kip a protagonist I could root for, but she does, beautifully. The book follows Kip on his road to wholeness--first as an inmate at a teen correctional facility, and then, as he tries to transition back into society, and living with his dad and new stepmother. The book is written in first-person narration,and I thought that she captured the voice of a teen boy amazingly well.
I thought that all the references to therapy, his time in the mental institution, and his general awareness of his own inner growth, gave the book an air of authenticity (made me wonder if she is a therapist herself or how much research she did.)I loved that she showed the step-mom as such a positive, supportive person, and I loved the romance thrown in--Sam was the perfect counterpart to Kip/Wade's character.
Recommended for the older teen and adults, especially teachers, mental health professionals, and any parent.