24 August 2007
Book Banter -- Whistling in the Dark
Title: Whistling in the Dark
Author: Lesley Kagen
Length: 297 pages
Genre: literary fiction
Plot Basics: Ten year-old Sally O'Malley has an overactive imagination. When a child molester and murderer hits her neighborhood in 1959 Milwaukee, she's convinced she will be the next victim. But she and her younger sister Troo, are left to fend for themselves that summer when their mother ends up in the hospital, their older sister spends more time with her boyfriend Eddie than her younger siblings and their stepfather abandons them.
Banter Points: Kagen writes beautifully through the voice of 10-year-old Sally, managing to capture the insight of how kids see the world. Kagen paints a great picture of this 1950s neighborhood with its deep-rooted Catholicism and hidden secrets.
Bummer Points: One of the big plot twists Word Nerd figured out before it was revealed. Maybe Word Nerd has an overactive imagination too.
Word Nerd recommendation: Before summer's gone, get this book. It'll make a great capstone for the summer reading list.