Monday, May 22, 2017

SAVING RED, by Sonya Sones

The story: Molly feels bad about a lot of things in her life, yet it seems like things might just be changing when she befriends homeless Red and falls in love with Cristo. But when Cristo dumps her and Red just keeps listening to the voices in her head, Molly realizes that she can't fix anyone else until she fixes herself. She just never knew how hard that was going to be.

June Cleaver's ratings: Langauge PG; Violence PG; Sexual content PG; Nudity G; Substance abuse PG; Magic & the occult G; GLBT content G; adult themes (mental illness, PTSD, parental discord, anxiety disorders) PG-13; overall rating PG-13.

Liz's comments: The reviews for this book were split between 8th-up and 9th-up, but I actually felt this would be all right for 7th-grade readers. Molly's befriending of a young woman with bipolar disorder (and perhaps schizophrenia) helps her learn that people who are different are not inherently bad, and certainly not worthy of automatic disdain. Molly's own pain in dealing with her PTSD-afflicted brother's disappearance and its effect on her family makes her a little more sympathetic to a girl she may never have spoken to otherwise, and through her experiences, YA readers might be able to gain a little empathy of their own.

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