Hate. Violence. Love. Loss. Fear. Guilt. Forgiveness. Depression. Racism. Teenage Years.
Be ready to journey through it all!
"This is not a love letter...
So don't get all excited for nothing. Maybe I should write you one, to go with all the letters you've written me and folded into perfect little airplanes. But I never wrote you one before, and it would be seriously bad luck to start now.
Chris. Where are you? How did you not come home last night?
I don't care where you went or what you're doing; I just want to know if you're okay. We all do. I mean, who does this? I'm starting to feel kind of weird. Desperate, if you want to know the truth. It's like when I get a mosquito bite. You're always telling me to leave it alone, but I can't stop itching until it bleeds. Right now you're my mosquito bite. Isn't that romantic?
I thought I'd write and let you know what we're doing to find you. Maybe it'll help me figure out where you are. So until you turn up, this is an account. I know. That's the unsexiest word ever. But if you want a sexy love letter, you're going to have to come back home and get it."
And so begins this poignant new story by award-winning author, Kim Purcell. This Is Not A Love Letter follows high school senior, Jessie, in the mystery of her boyfriend's disappearance. As one of the only black kids in their town, Chris dealt with his share of hate and violence. Is it possible that something horrible happened to this popular and talented boy? What really happened?
Purcell doesn't shy away from anything. This young adult novel is a candid glimpse into one teenager's life as she writes about all the events happening around her as her world comes crashing down, taking the reader along for all the ups and downs. I was pulled into this book from page one and was swept away by Purcell's honest writing and Jessie's relentless search for the truth. There are so many things happening in the world today that are hard to understand. It was refreshing to see a book that takes a brave step in opening up that world for its young readers.
While it does tackle some heavy topics, it doesn't throw anything in your face. There are no lectures; there is no "After School Special" feel to it. There's no sickeningly sweet life lesson attached. It's just life. Things are what they are and you either learn from it and adjust your own life accordingly, or you don't. We all have choices in life on how we deal with what is presented before us and on how we interact with the people around us. Everyone has their own secrets and struggles - no one is exempt. It's how you choose to survive that defines you.
This tender, coming-of-age story will pull on your emotions in all the right ways. I highly recommend for teenagers and adults alike!
This Is Not A Love Letter by Kim Purcell
Published by Hyperion, an imprint of Disney Book Group
On Sale Now
Suggested ages: 14+
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