I have a favorite so far…. This semester I am required to read three to four young adult novels a week. We have a long list to choose from and I think I found a good one under the National Book Award Winner section…
Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine is a touching book about a 10-yr-old girl, Caitlin, with Aspergers Syndrome. Her mother died to Cancer when she was three, and she recently lost her brother Devon in a school shooting. Devon was her rock. He helped her make sense of the strange world that she only saw as black and white. Without Devon, and with the help of her counselor she discovers empathy. The book isn’t about the shooting itself, but about the events after, through Caitlin’s eyes. My favorite part of the book is when Caitlin meets her first friend. He is a first grader who happened to have lost his mom, a teacher in the shooting.
I will try not to ruin the book too much and just tell you general reasons why I liked it. The book is easy to read, and easy to get caught up in. You are in Caitlin’s head, so you can see the innocence behind what she says and does, as well as, how the people in her life are affected. I was moved by her fathers efforts to keep it together for Caitlin. I laughed and cried while reading this book. It was written after and dedicated to the Virginia Tech shooting.
I highly recommend this book to anyone at any age, but would advise parents to read it along with young children, so they can answer questions.