Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Runaway, by Wendelin Van Draanen

Well written but implausible book about a 12 year old girl named Holly who runs away from an abusive foster home. I didn't know until after I finished that this book is a companion to a book called Sammy Keyes and the Sisters of Mercy, which I haven't read, so maybe if you read that one first, it will have more meaning to you, or maybe, if you read this book after this one, you really like this writer and will therefore like this book too.
I feel kind of ambivalent towards this book. I wouldn't have read it if I hadn't had a good reason to read it, but having read it, there were some very good things about it.
I liked it very much that the vocabulary was at an interesting level. Holly's poetry (and especially the variety of named forms that she experimented) was cool to see in a YA book. I could totally see a teen reader trying out some cinquains and sonnets after reading this book, which is awesome.
Flaws? Well, as I said, I felt it to be implausible, that Holly could survive that long on her own without being attacked. Now that I think about it, that is kind of sad is that that is the part of the book that I thought was implausible, not the abuse she suffered or her mother's slow dive into addiction, leading to her death. It is Holly's very survival that felt fake to me, and the happily-ever-after ending really added to my false-vibe. But it was still pretty darn good, and one of the better YA books I've read lately.
Quality: 7 Popularity: 8 Overall: 15 YA

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