Friday, August 10, 2012

How to Save a Life Review

How to Save a Life by Sara Zarr Review

August 10, 2012

Genre: Chick-Lit

Rating: 7/10

Summary: Jill MacSweeney just wishes everything could go back to normal. But ever since her dad died, she’s been isolating herself from her boyfriend, her best friends—everyone who wants to support her. And when her mom decides to adopt a baby, it feels like she’s somehow trying to replace a lost family member with a new one.

Mandy Kalinowski understands what it’s like to grow up unwanted—to be raised by a mother who never intended to have a child. So when Mandy becomes pregnant, one thing she’s sure of is that she wants a better life for her baby. It’s harder to be sure of herself. Will she ever find someone to care for her, too?

As their worlds change around them, Jill and Mandy must learn to both let go and hold on, and that nothing is as easy—or as difficult—as it seems.

This book started out good, exactly as I expected it to.  We are introduced to both girls and they are both somewhat normal—they both come off a bit creepy but other than that.  Jill is very relatable; she is a brat, but no matter how nice a teenager may seem on the outside, guaranteed, they are brats at home, or at least most of the time.  Jill is a little bit brattier, but her Dad just died so I understand.  I enjoyed reading from both their point of views because although Jill is more relatable, Mandy has these little subtle personality quirks that make her fun to read about especially reading how she sees other characters like Jill and Jill’s mom, Robin.  The side characters were very well fleshed out, except Jill’s sort-or-former friends that act like sheep, but they were such a small part of the story that they are almost not worth mentioning and didn’t ruin the story at all, promise.   

The storyline is a bit trickier.  After the fun of meeting the new characters wore off, I had no idea where this story was supposed to go, but the ending seemed plain enough.  There was this pause and I kept waiting for something exciting to happen to rocket me through the rest of the book.  That didn’t happen.  The book did pick up and I really enjoyed how it wrapped up, but it was more at a golf cart pace.    Once I was finally through it, I was glad I had read it.  Even though it was a slower read (I mean, it is summer), and not much happened I loved the characters that were so real I found myself worrying for them and breathing a sigh of relief when they changed for the better, Jill was less bratty. 

If you don’t mind another pregnancy book, and are ready to make some new friends then I highly recommend How to Save a Life. 

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