Tales of the Madman Underground by John Barnes
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Acknowledge how he is messed up but not as messed up as much as he thinks… the fact is most everyone in this is messed up. With his super super lady of a mother who likes to get her drink on, Karl is taking care of things despite issues that are shadowed by one unfortunate bunny incident. It’s that last that’s landed him with people with a history just as messed up as his own: an abused cheerleader, a farm boy jock likewise living that hell, a rich pretty girls who talk to stuffed toys, also a best friend who’s undetermined.
It’s starts with his version of getting better, him and his one day of normal at a time that starts the realization that no one has it easy; and that others knowing is not necessarily a bad thing. It’s in that knowing that things get spread around, shared even. So everyone in this knows they have issues and pasts, and everyone’s maybe afraid to take a closer look, but amongst them there’s no need for that closer look… because they know.
How he does what he does and why. How the rest of them have a system that should not work but works for them anyway is hilarious and sad and infuriating and touching. But, But, But…. It’s that they are different from the rest… that their normal isn’t what others consider the same. They acknowledge how things are and what they have to do for themselves and later each other that makes this work. This is the something more when I started it.
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