Friday, September 21, 2012

Flash Burnout by L.K. Madigan

Flash Burnout
Good Reads Summary
Flash Burnout by L.K. Madigan
Winner of the 2010 William C. Morris Award!

Fifteen-year-old Blake has a girlfriend and a friend who’s a girl. One of them loves him; the other one needs him.

When he snapped a picture of a street person for his photography homework, Blake never dreamed that the woman in the photo was his friend Marissa’s long-lost meth addicted mom. Blake’s participation in the ensuing drama opens up a world of trouble, both for him and for Marissa. He spends the next few months trying to reconcile the conflicting roles of Boyfriend and Friend. His experiences range from the comic (surviving his dad’s birth control talk) to the tragic (a harrowing after-hours visit to the morgue).

In a tangle of life and death, love and loyalty, Blake will emerge with a more sharply defined snapshot of himself.



My Thoughts
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Good reading this, though likely not the first time to have funny combined with the sad, not once does it cross the line into hokey and over the top. The way things wrap up, and there really is none… he screws up, but they all do (OK, him most of all) was fine… more than fine because he made me laugh, he made me cringe, and he made me furious, too. Except he screws up and he owns up to it.

A fifteen year old boy’s perspective, I kind of liked it even when I did want to give him a piece of my mind. But he isn’t a bad kid, in fact his heart is in the right place. It just takes his head a while to catch up and see things for what they were. Perhaps that last bit is made more difficult with two girls, one who needs him, another who loves him pulling him in two directions. But these girls aren’t bad girls either, they’re imperfect. Sometimes needy, overly emotional, too sensitive but they’ve both good moments to them too. With Marissa it’s a shred passion, and with Shannon, it’s this new sweet connection between the two, that both of them are exploring.

None of them are perfect, but something in all of them had me wanting them to be better. He is a funny kid and so very aware of it, in fact, it’s his thing. His other thing is trying to be this awesome boyfriend. All his little Houston moments cracked me up as they were supposed to. Pay heed, I’d think except at times it was a little too late. Him and Shannon, lust love sex… all rang true, better there’s an added element of him making things funny. Him and Marissa, it was all about being there for the other. And it was sweet, and I was all conflicted… but all the while, I knew who was talking and what he was feeling.   But Blake is young and not as wise as I would want him to be as were the girls in his life. Yet, there’s something that had me hopeful for the all of them.




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