Sunday, January 4, 2009

Deadville by Ron Koertge

This is the story of Ryan a boy who has spent two years trying not to exist, after the death of his beloved younger sister Molly. He spends his free time getting stoned with Andy, an overweight high school senior who deals dope, and tries to avoid his parents increasingly strained relations at home. Music is a huge part of his life, but he's been using his iPod less as a musical gateway and more as a shield from the world. Things start to change, however, when the high school popularity queen Charlotte gets thrown from her horse and ends up in the hospital in a coma. Forced to visit her bedside, he begins returning regularly, a kind of therapy for himself as much as an altruistic gesture to a near stranger he has no designs on. Along the way he cleans up his act, meets a great girl and has some enlightening conversations with the 'rents.
I really enjoyed this book. The dialogue was natural, the story and characters were engaging, and the parents were believable (I get tired of crummy descriptions of parents). Koertge throws us a bone with some small miracles and a charming ending, but there are plenty of rough spots to keep the reader on their toes. Yay.

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