Thursday, June 21, 2012

SEE YOU AT HARRY'S by Jo Knowles

So we're taking a break from all the emotional onslaught that's been going on this week to talk about a particularly amazing book. SEE YOU AT HARRY'S by Jo Knowles.

I'll admit I had no idea what this book was about. I don't read the synopsis on books. All I knew was I had to go to the middle grade section at Barnes & Noble to find it, and that I'd been seeing some tweets that claimed it to be brilliant.

So I crack it open, ready for anything.

What I got was not what I expected. Yes, it's a middle grade novel. Yes, it is brilliant. I could stop there, but it would not do this book justice.

Fern is a fabulous narrator. She questions things the way 12-year-olds do. She observes things in her family and Jo weaves those things together in such an orchestrated way that the plot is breathtaking.

And then. Then you'll start crying. Maybe it doesn't take a lot for me to cry. Who knows? (The Village usually does it, that's for sure.) But I had to escape upstairs to keep reading this book, because there are Things That Happen that made the breath leave my body.

And then Fern's feelings and reactions to those Things that are just so perfect. I feel bad I can't spill all the Things, but you should go get your own copy of SEE YOU AT HARRY'S and then email me so we can talk about the Things.

Seriously. This is one of the best books I've ever read. And I read a lot.

Have you ever read a book that made the breath leave your body it was so perfect? Which one? 

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Karen Baldwin said...

OK, I don't read middle grade, but you've made me darn curious with this novel. Help! I need an e-reader! There are no Barnes & Nobles in Mexico. Any clue which e-reader is the best? And is an i-Pad good for e-reading?

S.P. Bowers said...

I'm putting it on the list. Thanks for the recommendation.

Jemi Fraser said...

Definitely checking this one out! Sounds like it would be awesome for not just me, but the classroom as well :)

Laura Pauling said...

it's sitting in my library bag and I'll be reading it this week! I've heard great things!

midnightblooms said...

This is on my TBR list, but I haven't gotten up the courage to read it yet. I'm not in the right place to read a heart-wringer right now. But I have heard amazing things about it and am looking forward to reading it.

Matthew MacNish said...

I cry pretty easily while reading too, but I'm okay with it. I actually enjoy it (sort of - afterwards at least).

Angela Brown said...

I've been upping my MG intake lately so this is wonderful. Will have to add it to my TBR list.

Barbara Watson said...

I love all things MG and didn't have this on my list yet--obviously I do now!

And that expression/question about reading a book that made my breath leave my body. Wow. I think lately it might be THREE TIMES LUCKY.

Kelly Polark said...

I so want to read this book! I read Pearl by Jo Knowles last month and loved it.
I want to read it and share it with my daughter!

Stephsco said...

I've heard such great things about this author's work but I haven't yet read any of her books.

When I read Paper Towns by John Green I was blown away. I'd read some YA prior to this but it was mostly paranormal and fantasy; I hadn't read the new crop of YA contemporaries at all. It blew me away. Sara Zarr's Sweethearts was similarly beautiful and gut-wrenching.

Liesel K. Hill said...

I don't read much MG either but with a review like this, I'm going to have to start, aren't I?

As for a book that took my breath away, it's not MG or YA, but adult: Cormac McCarthy's The Road. Beautiful and tragic and wonderful and breathtaking. Yup, I feel you!

Julie Hedlund said...

Wow, that is one heck of a review! Putting this on my "must read" list.

Marie Dalgaard said...

Oh, I want to read this book now! Just might have to wait a little bit. I went through all of those thing you are talking about with THE FAULT IN OUR STARS by John Green not too long ago, and I think my heart will need at longer break in between being wrenched.

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