July 23, 2014
by C. Lee McKenzie
When he's sentenced to an after-school youth program, he goes, but won't take part.
The question is will Hutch come around in time? Will he grab this last chance and finally find the freedom he craves?
"A perfect example of struggle and aid, loss and love." By Celeste Hawkins 1 year ago
This novel focuses on the despair of a teenager running in the same circles his parents did. Although he wants to break free from their failures, he finds himself joining them in a slow descent.
Hutch, the protagonist, has an inability to read or seek help for any of his problems. He prefers being on his own and letting the pieces fall as they may, until he gets into some serious trouble. Now, he has to attend a meeting with other troubled students and a Priest who shared the same path as them at one point. As Hutch learns the true value of friendship and kindness, his other relationships begin to change. His only friend, which he dubbed 'Fat Nyla', is bullied for being smart and overweight. However, when Hutch begins to learn his true worth and reflect it upon the people in his life, she begins to learn hers too, and reach out for what she truly wants.
This book had me gripped from beginning to end. Each character was fascinating, from the Spanish girl who would make oddly sexual comments in class to the boy who had to leave town because his father was getting out of jail. These tiny side characters had so much to offer! The language was spot on, which meant the reader would understand the kind of barriers Hutch had to overcome.
This book is worth the buy! It shows an accurate display of struggling kids in the modern era and sends a message that sometimes all you need to do is listen to the people around you.