There are books that make you cry and then there are books that reach into your heart and yank it out, leaving you sobbing for 100 pages. And even though you know it is just a book , you cannot help but feel like the author got it exactly and that it is the saddest yet best thing you have ever read. Jo Knowles made me cry for 100 pages or so. Brandon had to ask what was wrong, and granted I am pregnant and have plenty of hormones, but the way she writes this book and what happens in it would make even my husband cry if he ever read it.
I would hate to give anything away so just know that this book is a must read for mature 5th graders and up. This book will stay with you for a very long time. This book will be one that you recommend to others feeling compelled to do so because they must read it and tell you how they felt. This book is one for everyone to read.
Twelve-year-old Fern feels invisible. It seems as though everyone in her family has better things to do than pay attention to her: Mom (when she’s not meditating) helps Dad run the family restaurant; Sarah is taking a gap year after high school; and Holden pretends that Mom and Dad and everyone else doesn’t know he’s gay, even as he fends off bullies at school. Then there’s Charlie: three years old, a “surprise” baby, the center of everyone’s world. He’s devoted to Fern, but he’s annoying, too, always getting his way, always dirty, always commanding attention. If it wasn’t for Ran, Fern’s calm and positive best friend, there’d be nowhere to turn. Ran’s mantra, “All will be well,” is soothing in a way that nothing else seems to be. And when Ran says it, Fern can almost believe it’s true. But then tragedy strikes- and Fern feels not only more alone than ever, but also responsible for the accident that has wrenched her family apart. All will not be well. Or at least all will never be the same.