Aaron's Reviews > Somebody, Please Tell Me Who I Am

Somebody, Please Tell Me Who I Am by Harry Mazer
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's review
Jun 27, 2012

really liked it
Read in June, 2012

Harry Mazer has a talent for looking at the affects of war on young people, and his newest novel does just that. Ben Bright has the potential for a great future in the theater. He is in love with his high school sweetheart. He also feels a great deal for his country and feels obligated to sign up to join the reserves to help in this time of war. As you can imagine, his friends and family are worried about him and the dangers he will face. Unfortunately, their worries are not for naught as Ben is injured in a bombing while serving in Iraq.

While the book is broken down in three sections (Before, During, and After), the focus is on the story of dealing with what happens after the bombing, when Ben and those around him have to deal with his TBI (traumatic brain injury). The story really pulls on the heartstrings, and it becomes difficult to see who the title really applies to:

*Ben who has to relearn everything from talking to walking
*his girlfriend/fiance who is now involved with a young man who is very different from the guy who proposed just as he was shipping off for an assignment.
*his best friend Nikko, whose life is also being redefined
*his brother Chris, who is struggling with his own disabilities while being confronted with his brother's new challenges
*his parents who find their whole world being challenged by their older son's new status.

The writing is incredible. While the novel, at 148 pages, is quite brief it rides the involved emotions to present a realistic presentation of the challenges being faced by so many of our soldiers as they come home with injuries .... physical, neurological, and emotional.

I couldn't put this one down!
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