Paula Griffith's Reviews > I Will Save You

I Will Save You by Matt de la Pena
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Mar 05, 11

bookshelves: guy-reads
Read from March 02 to 04, 2011

Kidd has lived a traumatic life with a father who has beaten him and his mother. When his mother is driven to commit suicide, Kidd is placed at Horizons where he can get the counseling he needs for depression and post traumatic stress syndrome. It is at Horizons that he meets Red, the caretaker of a campground and former surfer. Kidd leaves Horizons to seek out Red and take him up on his offer of a summer job; however, Kidd is not able to leave his demons behind, and soon Devon finds him. The counselors at Horizons warned Kidd that he needed to avoid Devon because he was always getting them both in trouble. Devon is very charismatic and knows what to say when Kidd doesn't, so Kidd soon falls into old habits until he notices that Devon is really trying to harm Kidd...and then he threatens to go after Olivia, the only girl he has ever loved. In trying to save Red from drinking and Olivia from Devon, Kidd almost loses everything that means anything to him. Young adult librarians, this is a must read. Recommended for grades 8+; those who like books with unusual twists will love this book.

After reading I Will Save You, now I must read everything else Matt de la Pena has written. This is a stylistically clever that further establishes Kidd's credibility as narrator. Like Mockingbird did for readers who want to understand autism, I Will Save You has made it possible for readers to understand a complicated mental illness with a hero whose heart is as big as Texas. Yes, get a box of kleenex.
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