Title: The Way We Go
Author: Roxie Prince
Lindsay Picou is sixteen going on thirty. She’s been forced to not only take care of herself, but to raise her little sister, too, because their mother, Gloria, is a part-time prostitute and a full-time wanderer. Then, Gloria meets Ben. He not only changes her life for the better, but Lindsay’s, too. These changes come with a set of challenges Lindsay isn’t equipped for; she has to learn to be a student, a friend, and a daughter. In short, she has to learn how to be herself in a completely new world, and she is forced to learn things about the people in her life that both hurt and free her. Just when she starts to feel like she’s getting a handle on things, she meets Micah, Ben’s best friend, and things get a lot more complicated.
I am always looking for great novels that realistically portray the human experience, and The Way We Go does just that. Roxie Prince doesn’t sugar coat the late teen experience, or the reality of growing up in a broken family with a parent who is not reliable. I felt connected to Lindsay, the heroine, in so many ways, and my heart was broken and mended constantly throughout the novel.
What I loved most about Prince’s writing, however, was how she was able to mix artistic language with remarkable descriptions and observations. A great example of this is:
“Locks of glossy black hair fell across her face, and Lindsay couldn’t help but notice how beautiful her mother was and think how it had been a curse rather than a blessing.”
Through that quote Prince breaks the traditional belief that all characters who are pretty have the easiest lives. She turned all of these stereotypes on their head and revealed the truth that most of us want to avoid.
“All she knew for sure was that she wanted to be strong and powerful and in control of her own life, whatever position she may be in. She hoped, when she was all grown up, she would be. Being a kid was unfair; you controlled nothing about your own life.”
I admire Prince as an author, and compare her to other great writers who write on the human experience, such as Jodi Picoult, my favorite author. Her work is for young adults and adults alike, and many could learn from the experiences that she writes about.
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