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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Review: Miles From Ordinary (Williams)

Title: Miles From Ordinary
Author: Williams
Genre: Fiction, Realistic, Mental Illness, Family, Mother/Daughter
Pages: 197
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Just like every other 13-year-old, Lacey just wants to be a normal teenage girl, for one normal summer. But her mother's struggles with mental illness might just put this wish out of reach.

Lacey is the strength of this novel. Her desires for normalcy, her wish to protect her mother and stay under the social services radar, her drive to fix everything, are all such normal teenage reactions to her situation.

The story is at turns suspenseful, sad, and painful. But through it all, Lacey is also hopeful. She grows as a character, from thinking that she can do it all to realizing that she needs help. Her emotions are raw and real. She is desperate to have her aunt's help, but she is also angry at her aunt for leaving her alone.

The reality of living in a family affected by mental illness is authentically portrayed. This is an emotional journey which is strong on atmosphere and vivid imagery. Overall, a moving novel by a skilled author.

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