Now 2019 Previous Articles Road Essays Road Reviews Author Title Source Age Genre Series Format Inclusivity LGBTA Portfolio Artwork WIP

Recent posts


Month in review

Reviews
All of Us with Wings by Michelle Ruiz Keil
The Book Supremacy by Kate Carlisle
Booking the Crook by Laurie Cass
The Boy from Tomorrow by Camille DeAngelis
Camp by Kayla Miller
Cilla Lee-Jenkins: The Epic Story by Susan Tan
Cilla Lee-Jenkins: This Book Is a Classic by Susan Tan
Delicious in Dungeon, Volume 3 by Ryoko Kui
The Dragon Princess by E.D. Baker
Emily the Strange: The 13th Hour by Rob Reger and Buzz Parker
Full Steam Ahead, Felix by Kate Moore
Genesis Begins Again by Alicia D. Williams
Giant Days, Volume 10 by John Allison
Gideon Falls, Volume 1: The Black Barn by Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino
The Grief Keeper by Alexandra Villasante
Heartwood Hotel 3: Better Together by Kallie George
If It Makes You Happy by Claire Kann
In the Key of Nira Ghani by Natasha Deen
Itty Bitty by Cece Bell
Kitty Cornered by Bob Tarte
The Legend of Korra: Ruins of the Empire, Part One by Michael Dante DiMartino and Michelle Wong
Lions and Liars by Kate Beasley and Dan Santat
The Penderwicks in Spring (audio) by Jeanne Birdsall
P.S. I Miss You by Jen Petro-Roy Riverboat Roulette by Carolyn Keene
Roast Mortem by Cleo Coyle
Royals by Rachel Hawkins
The Secrets of Winterhouse by Ben Guterson
Stay Sweet by Siobhan Vivian
Storm of Locusts by Rebecca Roanhorse
Weird Birds by Chris Earley

Miscellaneous
Almost done with March in August
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (August 05)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (August 12)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (August 19)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (August 26)
July 2019 Sources
July 2019 Summary

Road Essays
Road Narrative Update for July 2019

Previous month


Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

Canadian Book Challenge: 2019-2020



Privacy policy

This blog does not collect personal data. It doesn't set cookies. Email addresses are used to respond to comments or "contact us" messages and then deleted.


The Grief Keeper: 08/31/19

The Grief Keeper

The Grief Keeper by Alexandra Villasante opens in a detention center. Marisol "Sol" Morales and her sister Gabi have been kept there while they wait the ruling for their asylum claim. When a kitchen door is left open, the sisters take advantage of the situation and flee.

Along the way they're picked up by a woman who works for immigration. She tells the girls that their asylum request has been denied. But, she has an offer for Sol that will allow her and her sister to stay legally. She has to become part of a PTSD medical study. What had begun as a contemporary, realistic fiction veers into speculative fiction.

The study involves linking two people together emotionally via cuffs — like tracking devices people on house arrest wear. One device transmits the emotional trauma and the other receives. Sol's task is to be the grief keeper for a young woman about her age who lost someone close to her. It's turned her suicidal and no other treatments have worked.

For the device to work, the receiver has to be in proximity to the patient. While they are supposed to be close but separate, Sol ends up befriending the woman she's supposed to be helping.

It's through their friendship that both young women begin their healing. Some of it via the cuffs. Some of it is via old fashioned interactions. Through their joint recovery we learn of their shared trauma. We learn why Sol and Gabi had to leave.

This speculative fiction YA also sits in the road narrative spectrum. For the spectrum, it's the journey that sets up the rest of the narrative. In this regard, it's the two young women as a couple (33). Instead, it's Sol and Gabi as siblings (CC) who are the travelers. The destination is home — both literally, the home (66) where they stay to be part of the medical test — and figuratively, a new safe home somewhere in the United states. Finally the route is the Blue Highway (33), the roads up to the United States, and then through it. All together, it's the story of sisters seeking out a new home via the Blue Highway (CC6633).

Five stars

Comments (0)


Name:
Email (won't be posted):
Blog URL:
Comment:

Twitter Tumblr Flickr Facebook Facebook Contact me

1997-2019 Sarah Sammis