Kathleen's Reviews > Someday This Pain Will Be Useful to You

Someday This Pain Will Be Useful to You by Peter Cameron
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's review
Apr 21, 2008

really liked it
Read in April, 2008

James is a character that kept me reading. Cameron knows how to twist and turn a good tale about an adolescent with such glorious details. James' relationship with his grandmother was so profound, especially when he goes to see her at the end of the book and he fixes her a drink and turns on a record she will like and he feels like she is not judging him. The other members of his family were so knowable. The time with the therapist felt so typical of a teenager who was only there since his parents had sent him. His friend at the gallery and that e-mail encounter was believable. I didn't want the book to end, but even the ending fit the tone of the book, a rarety these days.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by Iva (new) - rated it 4 stars

Iva I just read this last month and I reacted as you did--Peter Cameron is a gifted writer with a fresh take on teenagers and their relationships with adults, particularly family members. Absolutely everyone in this novel was believable and memorable. He seems mature for his age, but then when he does the "email trick" on his co-worker, we see that he isn't that worldly at all. This is one of those books, like Sherman Alexie's The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian that not only transcends the YA label, but makes us happy to gifted writers are stretching their skills to YA audiences. (But you can see that adults are enjoying them as well.)

Anne I liked the ending too. As the mother of a 13 year old boy, I certainly hope he doesn't feel like he's got everything all figured out when he's 18.

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