Thursday, July 2

Lost in the Sun

Lost in the Sun
Lisa Graff

My rating: ★★★½

ISBN: 978-0399164064
Publisher: Philomel
Date of publication: May 26, 2015
Age: Grades 4 - 8
Genre: Realistic Fiction

Themes: guilt, friendship, anger, family relationships, baseball

After a freak accident in 5th grade that left one kid dead, Trent is left with a brain full of terrible thoughts he can't get rid of—he’s pretty positive the entire disaster was his fault. So now that middle school is starting, he feels like he's getting a fresh start, a chance to prove to everyone that he's not the horrible screw-up they seem to think he is. But it isn’t until Trent gets caught up in the whirlwind that is Fallon Little—the girl with the mysterious scar across her face—that things begin to change. Because fresh starts aren’t always easy. Even in baseball, when a fly ball gets lost in the sun, you have to remember to shift your position to find it.

Trent has a lot to deal with—emotionally and socially and mentally. Which is understandable, considering it involves guilt over the death of one of his friends. But once again, it is tough to read. There's depression, anger, and a whole-heck of a lot of guilt. While it is realistic, it can be tedious. What I did appreciate is the ending. Which, let's be honest, is not going to be the case for everyone; it's a pretty up-in-the-air ending. But it was very realistic. It marks the beginning of Trent's fresh start, so not every question and conflict is answered yet. Graff's writing and the story is extremely well done, it's just the content that may or may not be fun for every reader.

The main characters were extremely well done as well, especially Fallon Little. Her depth of character is amazing, and that's even without finding out the story behind her scar. Trent's dad however? A total jerk with no apparent reason for being such. I was bothered by him and their whole relationship. So overall, I can appreciate the talent it took to write, but I would be pretty selective in my recommendation.

Readalikes would include Umbrella Summer (which is the companion novel, actually), and Finding Audrey (for the slightly older middle-schooler)

Find it at your library or on Amazon

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