Winger by YA author Andrew Smith was my favorite YA read last year. I was not prepared for the ending. The cover, title, opening chapters, just did not give me a sense that I would be weeping at the end of the book. And it was all the more powerful.
The dark humor, the sarcasm, the self-deprecating tone…I felt like I was reading Vonnegut.
And last night, I finished 100 Sideways Miles also by Smith. This time, I mentally engaged, but was tentative, waiting for a crazy heart-wrenching emotional roller coaster. This time tho, I was surprised by the subtlety of the plot. Nothing major really happens (there is some suspense at the end in the roadside flood). But in the end, it’s a story about a guy, with epilepsy, who lost his mother in a tragic accident, who falls in love, who copes, who struggles, who thinks, and who has the best friend ever.
Again, the voice of the main character was spot on. Smith writes characters that I totally get. I feel like I am the character (although not male and not sixteen-going-on-seventeen), sorry, I hope you don’t start singing The Sound of Music soundtrack.
And tonight, I start Grasshopper Jungle. And I plan to scroll Twitter to see who else is having as much fun as I am, reading Andrew Smith’s novels.