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Tag Archives: Genre: Tough Stuff

[Review] Miracle by Elizabeth Scott

Book: Miracle by Elizabeth Scott

Publication: June 5, 2012 from Simon Pulse

Rating: 2.5/5 stars

Summary (Amazon): Megan is a miracle. At least, that’s what everyone says. Having survived a plane crash that killed everyone else on board, Megan knows she should be grateful just to be alive. But the truth is, she doesn’t feel like a miracle. In fact, she doesn’t feel anything at all. Then memories from the crash start coming back.

     Scared and alone, Megan doesn’t know whom to turn to. Her entire community seems unable—or maybe unwilling—to see her as anything but Miracle Megan. Everyone except for Joe, the beautiful boy next door with a tragic past and secrets of his own. All Megan wants is for her life to get back to normal, but the harder she tries to live up to everyone’s expectations, the worse she feels. And this time, she may be falling too fast to be saved….

My Review: I honestly don’t know what I was expecting when I started reading Miracle. This was my first Elizabeth Scott book and all I knew her was that she writes contemporary YA fiction.

Miracle was a fascinating read. There’s really no other word for it. It’s all too easy to see how Megan’s trauma could go overlooked in the wake of her survival from the crash. Her parents are too blinded by their relief at the fit that she’s alive to notice that Megan hasn’t been able to re-adjust to life after the crash. It’s understandable, but it was still heart wrenching to see Megan suffering and see that her parents don’t realize that she’s hurting. I couldn’t help but feel angry at her parents throughout most of the book for being so oblivious.

I had a hard time understanding the other characters as well. Her best friends were quick to welcome her home and wanted to believe she was the miracle they all though that she was. But when it become obvious that Megan was acting completely different that she had before, they got angry at her rather than try to help. I felt that they were too wrapped up in their lives and wanted everything to be exactly the same, they weren’t able to understand their friend had been through an ordeal beyond their experience.

The characters of Margaret and David del the most real to me. They both understood that something was different with Megan, however they both reacted and dealt with it differently. Margaret with the understanding of a women who has seen far too much in her life and David with all the maturity of a ten year old boy. David’s reactions made me smile even when he was being infuriating because I felt that Elizabeth Scott capture the character of a put out younger brother perfectly, he understood that there was something wrong with Megan but he didn’t understand what or how to deal with it.

The book moved at a quick enough pace, but I felt that overall the plot was a bit disjointed. It felt like the disjointedness was doing intentionally to help the reader understand what Megan was experiencing, however it felt like there was something missing to really drive that point home. I’d have preferred a bit that was a bit longer and had a more fleshed out story and characters. There was so much potential in this story and overall it fell flat for me.

I’m glad I got a chance to read Miracle, but I’m not so sure if I’ll be rushing out to buy any of her older books. Anyone want to give me some reasons why I should? Have you read Miracle and want to share your thoughts on it?

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Posted by on 12 June, 2012 in Book Reviews

 

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TGIF! It’s All About Issues this week.

TGIF is a weekly meme hosted by Ginger at GReads. Every Friday she posts a new question and it’s a really fun way to discover new blogs.

This weeks question is: Which books have you found to be very rewarding when it comes to tackling tougher issues? 

I think this is a fantastic topic as books can speak to us in ways that people sometimes can’t. I’ve often found it easier to discuss personal topics when relating them to a book or a story, it makes it easier for me to explain the emotion behind the events when I can borrow someone else’s words.

As Maureen Johnson said in her post on The Guardian’s website last summer, “Yes, teen fiction can be dark – but it shows teenagers they aren’t alone.”

Teens have always had plenty of difficult experience to navigate and books provide a source of comfort and a way for them to discover that they aren’t alone. Below are the books I’ve found to be the most rewarding when trying to handle an issue or figure out how to discuss it with the teen girls I used to work with.

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson.
Melinda calls the police after an end of summer party turns wild. Her classmates ostracize her for getting them into trouble, but they don’t know the terrible secret she hides. It tears me up to think that there are girls and women both out there who have experienced this same sort of brutal attack and are too afraid to speak out against their attacker. This book helps young women to realize that they do have a voice and they shouldn’t be afraid to use it in their own defense. This is one of those books that stays with you long after you’ve finished reading.

 


Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher.
As someone who has had more personal experience with suicide than I would wish upon anyone else, this book was particularly difficult to read. While heartbreaking and difficult to read at times, this book helps to show teens and young adults what happens to those left behind after a successful suicide. I know that at times it may seem that ending it all is the best option, but this book helps them to understand that their death will affect more people than they may even realize.

Suicide is never an easy topic to discuss with teens or young adults, but it’s something that most of them will face at some point. This book is the perfect way to start the discussion and hopefully frame suicide in way that will give them cause to stop and really think things through if they are ever in that situation.

 

Rules by Cynthia Lord.
In this Newbury Honor Book Catherine is a 12-years-old girl and her eight-year-old brother, David, has autism. The book is form Catherine’s point of view and she explains how David’s autism makes her life complicated and causes her to wish that her life was a bit more “normal”. It’s hard for anyone to have a sibling that’s “different” and this book is a great way to help kids understand what their what is happening with their sibling and how normal things can still be for them.

I grew up with a cousin with cerebal palsy and I wish that there had been a book like this for me to read when I was younger.

What books do you use for opening up a discussion on tough issues? Are there any issues in particular you have a harder time talking about? I’d love to hear everyone’s thoughts on this!

 
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Posted by on 1 June, 2012 in TGIF

 

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