Emma's Reviews > Falling Through Darkness

Falling Through Darkness by Carolyn MacCullough
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's review
Jan 18, 2010

it was amazing
Read from January 18 to 21, 2010

Seventeen-year-old Ginny's life feels like a waking dream. Or maybe a nightmare. It all seemed so different when Aidan first came crashing into her life.

Beautiful, vivid, reckless Aidan is nothing like Ginny--a quiet, good girl more comfortable blending in than standing out. But Aidan makes Ginny different. He makes her want more. Makes her feel more. In the end, he makes her feel too much.

There was a crash. Something everyone else is calling an accident. Aidan is gone. But Ginny is left behind to piece together the shattered moments of her life with, and now without, him in Falling Through Darkness (2003) by Carolyn MacCullough.

Falling Through Darkness is MacCullough's haunting first novel. This is a story about depression and falling apart, but it is also a story about grieving and acceptance. Ginny would be perfectly happy to stay in this fugue state, sleepwalking through life. That is until a new tenant moves in forcing Ginny to confront all the things she knows about Aidan, and the accident, but never wanted to admit to anyone--especially herself.

Ginny's depression after the accident is palpable in MacCullough's writing. Equally compelling are her portrayals of Aidan's frenetic energy. Even when Ginny falls into his dangerous habits it's easy to understand how she would be sucked into his jet stream. The story shifts seamlessly between Ginny's present and memories of meeting Aidan and their subsequent, whirlwind, relationship with writing that is evocative and beautiful.

Possible Pairings: Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson, Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher, The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, 13 Little Blue Envelopes by Maureen Johnson, Looking for Alibrandi by Melina Marchetta, A Map of the Known World by Lisa Ann Sandell, My Private Nation (album and single) by Train
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