Bonnie's Reviews > The Local News

The Local News by Miriam Gershow
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's review
May 07, 2009

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The Local News by Miriam Gershow is a story about the aftermath of change to a family when a young teen boy goes missing. As a reader, you follow Lydia who shares her thoughts and experiences as a 15 year old girl and then later as an adult looking back.

Lydia is torn between the grief she feels that her brother Danny is missing and the relief that he is not there to tease, harass and ignore her. These are complicated feelings of a young girl that are very well played out in this novel. She is challenged to deal with the depth of her own emotions and balance that with the attention she is receiving at school. She was once a quiet girl with few friends and then suddenly she is getting attention that has taken her to a celebrity like status among her peers and Danny's friends. Lydia grapples with the attention and overall finds it unwanted. She finds herself in situations that she would never have experienced if Danny was around.

Lydia must also deal with her parents neglect as they seem to forget about her as they focus on finding Danny. Danny was the favorite child, at least from Lydia's perspective and she is left to fend for herself in many ways. Everything changes in an instant when a family member goes missing. This novel explores this issue from the families perspective and specifically from a sibling perspective, and does so in a depth and style that is gut wrenching at times and easily relatable at others. Many of us who grew up with siblings understand the mixed emotions and love-hate relationship that you can have with a sibling.

The story ends with Lydia as an adult, 10 years later and brings a closure to the story that I found worked very well. I was glad to see how Lydia had grown as a woman and what happened to her and other family members and friends as they moved forward in their lives.

This is Miriam Gershow's first novel and I think that she has shown excellent strength in her story-telling abilities and writing style that this novel showcases. The Local News is haunting and compelling and you will find yourself drawn into the story all the way through to the end.


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