Monday, September 20, 2010
When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
So many people have raved about this book, telling me, "You must read it!" I really wasn't excited about reading it, because the blurb didn't sound all that exciting and the cover is kind of blah. Yes, I know, I'm not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but we all do to a point. Well, I finally read it, and now I'm kicking myself for not reading it sooner. (And the cover makes much more sense after reading the book.)
Miranda receives a strange note shortly after noticing that her apartment's key is not in the hiding place she and her mom had selected. "I am coming to save your friend's life, and my own. I ask two favors. First, you must write me a letter." After this Miranda receives more strange notes that give clues to events occurring in the future. The solution of this puzzle is amazing as Miranda attempts to put all the pieces together.
I could so relate to Miranda's obsession with her favorite book, A Wrinkle in Time, and how she carried it with her and reread it again and again. My favorite book wasn't A Wrinkle in Time, but I still remember my favorite book and how I would return to it again and again. I'm sure it was the comfort of something familiar for me and probably to a point with Miranda as well. I really liked how the story of the mysterious notes were woven into the story about Miranda's life with her mom and her friends at school. I'm not sure how much a person who hasn't read A Wrinkle in Time would get all the references to Meg and the story itself. It's probably best to at least have a working knowledge of A Wrinkle in Time, but not an absolute must.
When You Reach Me uniquely ties together a realistic story with a fantasy story in a way that allows the reader to question events and maybe investigate the long term results of his decisions. I loved how the story kept you puzzling over the clues in the mysterious letters along with Miranda. This is one of those books that you don't realize how good it is until you finish it. Wonderful story! I give it a 'B+.'