Nancy's Reviews > The Serpent King

The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner
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it was amazing
bookshelves: audio, young-adult
Read 2 times. Last read June 2, 2017 to June 25, 2017.

This book ripped my heart out and stomped on it, yet I adored it. Senior year is starting for three high school misfit friends: Dill, Travis and Lydia. All three have different reasons for not fitting in with their rural Bible Belt Tennessee town, but their tight friendship buffers a lot of the ugliness surrounding them. Dill's Pentecostal snake-handling preacher father is now behind bars for child pornography leaving him and his mother deep in debt and shame, Travis deals with an abusive father whose shames him for being gentle and loving fantasy novels, while Lydia has caring parents but her edgy fashion blog alienates her high school peers. As Lydia prepares for a future in NYC after graduation, Dill and Travis have less prospects and worry about how their lives will change, especially Dill who secretly is in love with Lydia and dreads the future. A gut-wrenching incident affects one of the three, forever changing their dynamic. After it occurred, I was shocked. I had to put the book down for awhile and process what just happened. How the other two, and their family members cope (I ached for two of the mothers) bring the book to a poignant and hopeful conclusion. One drawback though was the portrayal of the Christians in the community. They were shown to be intolerant and judgmental, and a more balanced representation would have been welcome. But...overall, this was a brilliant book, that showed readers that they shouldn't accept diminished dreams, they should strive to be the best they can.
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
June 2, 2017 – Started Reading
June 2, 2017 – Shelved
June 2, 2017 – Shelved as: audio
June 2, 2017 – Shelved as: young-adult
June 25, 2017 – Finished Reading

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