Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Life of Glass - Jillian Cantor

Before he died, Melissa's father told her about stars. He told her that the brightest stars weren't always the most beautiful--that if people took the time to look at the smaller stars, if they looked with a telescope at the true essence of the star, they would find real beauty. But even though Melissa knows that beauty isn't only skin deep, the people around her don't seem to feel that way. There's her gorgeous sister, Ashley, who will barely acknowledge Melissa at school; there's her best friend, Ryan, who may be falling in love with the sophisticated Courtney; and there's Melissa's mother, who's dating someone new, someone who Melissa knows will never be able to replace her father.
To make sure she doesn't lose her father completely, Melissa spends her time trying to piece together the last of his secrets and completing a journal he began--one about love and relationships and the remarkable ways people find one another. But when tragedy strikes, Melissa has to start living and loving in the present as she realizes that being beautiful on the outside doesn't mean you can't be beautiful on the inside.
This is a lyrical tale of love, loss, and self-discovery from the author of THE SEPTEMBER SISTERS.

Title: The Life of Glass
Author: Jillian Cantor
Genre: Young Adult
Publisher: HarperTeen An Imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
My Rating: 4/5

I enjoyed this book. It was written beautifully; the words just dance across the page as it slowly tells the story of a girl, Melissa, who has lost her father to cancer. It tells us of how she deals, or doesn't deal with his death, and how she maintains friendships with those around her. A few things fell flat for me though. I can't imagine her mother would be dating so soon after losing her husband--she's dating a year later. The author never expands on how it really impacts Melissa and Ashley, it never goes into detail on how upset the girls are or should be. There doesn't seem to be any depth to their emotions concerning her dating. I know that people handle grief differently, but this just seemed slightly false. There should have been some reaction vocalized between the two girls and their mother. (A fight or two, at least something.)
Other than that, and the semester long frog dissections, I enjoyed it. Melissa comes into her own, and discovers that life can and will go on without her father, but that she can keep his essence alive through her memories of him. She pores over his journal, and savours it because it brings him back vividly to her through those few pages. All in all, this is a coming of age novel, wherein Melissa finds herself, and learns to look to the future, instead of living in the past. An enjoyable read; I'd recommend it to anyone looking for something heartfelt to read.

I received this book through the BORROW MY ARC TOUR hosted by Katrina over at Bloody Bad.

Borrow My ARC Tour

This book counts toward the 2010 100+ Reading Challenge over at J. Kaye's book blog.


Melissa said...

Brilliant review...it sounds very sad, but very good :)

Joy said...

I read her September sisters book and though it was sad it was written very well.

Tammy said...

Sounds like a book tha needs to be read. Thank you for the wonderful review.

Katrina (Bloody Bad) said...

Love the review. I am glad you enjoyed it and I have to agree, there did seem to be a flaseness there.