Author: Brent Runyon
Year of Publication: 2006
Genre: Young Adult
First Line: "This sucks. We're moving. The truck just left with all our stuff and mom and dad are waiting for me in the car."
Summary: Maybe everything will be different here. Maybe I should drive away and never come back. Maybe my brother didn't mean to. Maybe my brother was right. Maybe I can get my girlfriend to say yes. Maybe no one will ever love me. Maybe I should be an actor. Maybe I shouldn't pretend to be deaf. Maybe if I just mouth the words, no one will know I"m not singing. But maybe someone will hear me anyway.
Source: Back of book.
Review: Brent Runyon's novel is not unlike, in theme, Catcher in the Rye. Throughout the novel, main character, Brian, mourns the death of his older brother. Meanwhile, Brian copes with moving to a new place, making new friends, dealing with girls, and the challenges of schoolwork. The novel is slow and is vague throughout. Much of the events and thoughts seem irrelevant and there's no clear sense of direction, which readers who enjoy plot-driven novels might find off-putting. Characters are varied and well-portrayed and several events surprised me (though when I read for pleasure, I tend to not project much -- I enjoy being surprised by the text as it comes). The writing style came across as very choppy and humdrum. Meanwhile, the ending kind of crept up on me and I felt there were too many loose ends after I finished reading. Probably not worth a read.
Worst part: Pace and lack of solid plot
Best part: Brian's guidance counselor
Other Books by This Author: The Burn Journals, Surface Tension: A Novel in Four Summers
Author's Website: Burn Journals