Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Dragonheart: "Made of Stars" by Kelley York

The Recommender is pretty picky. Usually, if a book doesn't grab me in the first couple of sentences... I move on. There are a LOT of books out there that do grab me... and I'll find myself wanting to keep reading even though there are cartoons to write and draw and working at the library and making Phantom jewelry and numerous other things, so, when I was approved by NetGalley for a recent title, I thought I'd check out the first couple of sentences. Next thing...I was half finished!  Made of Stars by Kelley York is a book that grabs you! It's the intriguing story of a half brother and sister whose father, a policeman, was basically involved with two women, one a long time girlfriend he had sort of broken up with, and the other, the woman he saw briefly after that. As Hunter says, their Dad ended up with neither woman and had two kids, instead.  From the time Ashlin and  Hunter were kids they've both spent the summer with each other at their father's home. They are very close and their alternating voices tell the story of their lives and of their friendship with Chance, a kid from the neighborhood in the Maine town where their father lives, who is around their age when they first meet him and seems like a cross between Huckleberry Finn and Peter Pan. He is charming and funny and insightful and a bit mysterious. He never seems to want to go home and they've never met his parents who are supposed to travel a lot. As a result, he becomes part of their family. Year after year, every summer,  the three are inseparable. Then, their dad is shot in the line of duty and needs time to recover. Two years go by before Hunter and Ashlin, now high school graduates, finally make it back to  spend time with their Dad and also to take a year off and decide what to do about college and ... they both want to reconnect with Chance. It's winter, now, instead of summer, and Chance doesn't just show up at the front door like in the past, seemingly psychically knowing when they've arrived. Too much time has gone by, and finding Chance isn't going to be easy. When they do finally find him...they realize there is something about their best friend that isn't quite right. As the story comes together, we learn about Chance's past along with Ash and Hunter. There are other secrets to uncover, things Hunter may have to face that he's been avoiding. Things even Ash doesn't suspect. Or does she? I won't give away any more of this moving coming-of-age story. Ms. York creates real characters you'll care about and Chance, himself, will break your heart. The Recommender says "Check this one out!" Try the first couple of sentences...

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