Juli's Reviews > Snow Lane

Snow Lane by Josie Angelini
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bookshelves: read-review-copies-2017

Antoinette Elizabeth Bianchi is the youngest of 9 children. 8 girls and 1 boy live in the house on Snow Lane. Their father works several jobs, and also works on the family farm. The kids help out, too. It takes a lot of work to keep a family of 11 going. Antoinette (called Annie) has multiple health problems. She is dyslexic, and prone to fits of vomiting and fatigue.

Slowly as Annie tells the story of her family, the truth comes out. The older children are forced to act as parents to the younger kids. There is never enough money for clothing, food and basic necessities. The children often feel sick or faint because there isn't enough food to eat. Annie can't invite friends over because she is embarrassed about their house and family life.....and other things that they never discuss. Scary things. Through it all Annie remains cheerful, although she always wonders why she is so slow compared to everyone else. Why her thoughts race at strange things. Why she counts and manipulates numbers in her head to calm herself down. Why is she so different?

I grew up Catholic, so I found it cute that every time Annie said crap or some other "bad'' word she listed the number of Hail Marys she would have to say as penance. :) I also sympathized with her for being the youngest in a large Catholic family. I was the youngest of 5, with the others many years older than me. It was awful. I was never physically abused....but there was mental abuse. This story was a bit hard for me to read because I sympathized with the main character so much. I dealt with similar problems at home and at school. I was never physically beaten, but I had a close friend at school who was. Her mother was very involved in the church, but regularly beat her daughter and locked her in a closet for minor infrractions. Finally my friend got pregnant and married in high school just to get away from her parents. Sad....but true. And in the 80's -- the same time period as this story. I don't know what happened to my friend....I lost contact with her during my college years and have never been able to find her again. I hope she is happy wherever she is. Those similarities in my background really pulled me into this story. I was a bit disappointed with the abrupt ending....the story just stops with nothing fully resolved. But...realistically...a family issue like that wouldn't be insta-fixed. The abrupt ending with things up in the air is the proper ending for this story. Disappointing, but more true than a fairy tale fix. This story is well-written. I normally don't like stream of consciousness type stories....but the author did a fantastic job with this one. I do have to admit that I found it extremely depressing though. Maybe because I identified with the main character so much.

Snow Lane is a hard hitting, masterfully written tale about a family....a family in trouble. But even in the darkness, there are bright spots. Annie is definitely a bright spot. She chooses to find the good in all things.....and that attitude and the promise of the life ahead of her is what leaves hope at the end of this tale.

I think I will try one more time to find my friend from school. This book really has me thinking about her. Maybe this time I will get lucky and one of my old classmates might know where she is. I can only try.....

To learn more about this author and her other books, check out her website: http://www.josephineangelini.com/

**I voluntarily read an advanced readers copy of this book from Feiwel & Friends (Macmillan) via NetGalley. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.**
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Reading Progress

November 10, 2017 – Shelved
November 10, 2017 – Shelved as: to-read
December 8, 2017 – Started Reading
December 8, 2017 – Finished Reading
December 13, 2017 – Shelved as: read-review-copies-2017

Comments Showing 1-1 of 1 (1 new)

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message 1: by Joe (new)

Joe Krakovsky Making this so personal makes it all the more beautiful as a work of art. Too bad it the ending left you hanging. Just think, maybe Annie grew up, went to college, and then decided one day to look up an old friend who got pregnant in high school.

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