Friday, September 11, 2009

Review #10: In This Way I Was Saved by Brian DeLeeuw

Title: In This Way I Was Saved

Author: Brian DeLeeuw
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Publication Date: August 2009
Format: ARC from Publisher (Thank you!)
Genre: Literature

When I read the back of this book I was really excited. It sounded mysterious and haunting, like I would be taken on a captivating adventure of adolescence. And it was set in New York, which I have said many times, is a favorite location for me.

Here is the description from the author's website:

On a chilly November afternoon, six-year-old Luke Nightingale’s life changes forever. On the playground across from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, he encounters Daniel. Soon the boys are hiding from dinosaurs and shooting sniper rifles. Within hours, Luke and his mother, Claire, are welcoming Daniel into their Upper East Side apartment—and their lives.

Daniel and Luke are soon inseparable. With his parents divorcing, Luke takes comfort in having a near-constant playmate. But there’s something strange about Daniel, who is more than happy to bind himself to the Nightingales. The divorce has cut Luke’s father out of the picture, and as his increasingly fragile mother struggles with the insidious family depression, Daniel—shrewd, adventurous, and insightful—provides Luke both recreation and refuge.

As Luke grows from a child to an adolescent to a young man, he realizes that as much as his mother needs him, Daniel needs him more. Jealous of Luke’s other attachments, Daniel’s gestures of friendship turn into increasingly sinister manipulations. In the end, Luke finds himself in a daily battle for control of his own life—wondering whether he or Daniel will emerge victorious.

My Review:

This book delivered in adventure but what I got was a very raw story, dark and frightening at times. An important piece of the story is revealed early on and it creates a dramatic shift in how you see the characters. They were not just two young boys growing into men together. They were two very different creatures navigating a path conflicted with rights and wrongs.

Though at times difficult to read, I did not dislike this book. I was truly captivated up until the end, because of the sheer talent of the writing. This is the debut novel for the author. I was lured in by the devilish nature of the boys and wanted to know how they turned out. But it was startling. You try not to sum up a book simply by the description on the back but when you have a reeeeally good description and a twist happens to change that really good description, it takes some time to settle into the new direction.

The relationships of the boys into adulthood puts this novel comfortably into the adult literature category but the mishaps and adventures of the two in adolescence can also land this book in the hands of a very well read young adult.

Original, beautiful and intense, In This Way I Was Saved is a novel for a brave reader with a little time to soak it in.

My rating would be a 4=Recommended.

Happy Reading!

*red headed book child


Julie@My5monkeys said...

that sounds like an interesting book.

Shanyn said...

Oooh I saw this book in Shelf Awareness and tried to get a copy... hasn't happened yet, but it's on my list!

Alyssa Kirk said...

Sounds like something I could recommend to my brothers. Thanks for the heads up. Hadn't heard of it!

Mel (He Followed Me Home) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mel (He Followed Me Home) said...

oooh, I have to read this soon, can't read you're review just yet but glad it got 4 stars :)

and I tagged you here