Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Mockingbird- Kathryn Erskine

'Caitlin misses her brother Devon. Since his death, she has no one to explain the world to her. And for Caitlin, the world is a confusing place, full of emotions and colours she can't understand. Dad tries to help, but he spend a lot of time crying in the shower. So when Caitlin reads the definition of the word 'closure' in the dictionary, she decides that that's what they need. And as she struggles to find it, she learns how to let a world of colour touch her black-and-white life.'

This book was a fascinating insight into what it must be like to be a child with Aspergers Syndrome, and how differently the condition makes you perceive the world. Erskine get's Caitlin's character just right, she makes the reader sympathetic towards her, but Caitlin isn't maudlin in the slightest. The book is written in a captivating first person with Caitlin as the narrator, this can be hard for authors to pull off, but Erskine hits it just right. The short chapters make easy breaking points (not that you'll want to put the book down that is!) and the discussion notes at the back are a nice little extra. In the back of the book, as well as the discussion notes, is a playlist of songs that Erskine listened to whilst writing the Mockingbird, and you can see how inspirational these pieces were to her when writing the story. A lot of research went into Mockingbird and I believe, with the amount of research that she lists on her website, that the portrayal of Caitlin's condition is very accurate. Mockingbird won the National Book Award in 2010, and I'm surprised it hasn't been more well known since then. 

I am not skilled enough to give this book credit for how truly touching it is, though it has been about a week since I turned the final page I can remember the plot and imagery vividly. The book puts you in a fascinating position, being able to see the world through an Asperger's perspective- whilst also knowing the reality. This is an art in itself as not once in the book did I have to stop and think "What does she mean by that?" It's very flowing, very natural, very touching.





Four stars


10 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. 4/4 stars. Great book!

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    2. Shut up, I find this review beautiful in so many ways. Thanks a lot :)

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  2. Really great book!! I recommend this book to everyone!! :)

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  3. I am a literature teacher and presented this book to my class. My class had very mixed reviews. Most said it was very interesting but hard to follow, while others simply didn't like the book. Anyone wishing for a heart-driven young-adult novel, here is your next book.

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  7. This book was not spectacular. It was quite sad and many people had mixed opinions about it. Your review was wonderful but I would give the book 3 stars or less.

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