Review Blog

Jun 13 2016

Thanks for the trouble by Tommy Wallach

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Simon and Schuster, 2016. ISBN 9781471146121
(Age: 16+) Highly recommended. 'Take stealing, for example. My Dad taught me that our society punishes people who only steal a little, but it rewards people who steal a lot.'
Parker Sante is a creative spirit who doesn't speak. He writes. He truants school and spends his time in the foyers of hotels. He watches guests and steals.
The day he meets a silver haired girl his life changes forever. She thinks he has a 'deranged form of graphomania' and he thinks Zelda is throwing her life away.
'Well, I'll make you a deal. I'll go to college if you don't jump off the Golden Gate Bridge.'
Would you want to live forever? This book explores the compromises made when life is without end, contrasting this with a life not lived, but avoided.
'Young people feel things so deeply, don't they?' she said quietly, almost to herself. 'Everything's happening for the first time.'
These two well developed and engaging characters affect each other deeply, but the life of only one of them will be transformed. The short stories written by Parker add another layer of depth to an already intriguing narrative. Is Zelda who she says she is? Can you ever become tired of life? There is an exploration of friendship that reveals many home truths and quiet understandings about the nature of humans and the grace of kindness.
Wallach has created scenarios that resonate with the world of the young adults and reinforces the value of believing in and remaining true to yourself.
Linda Guthrie

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