Book Thoughts: Right Behind You

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Gail Giles

‘Right Behind You’ is another book from the ‘Great Books for Teens’ discussion group I picked.

The story starts out with a young man handing his story (the book) to someone else and telling them they need to read it.  The book is him trying to relate the events of his life to this new friend.  But Kip’s life has been anything but fun.  When he was 9 years old, he got angry at another kid and, in a fit of rage, set him on fire.  He is sent to a juvenile prison and spends the next 4 or so years there.  Eventually, he is deemed well enough to leave and goes back to rejoin society. 

Another book that I was surprised I enjoyed!  Gail Giles’ writing is clear and quick.  The chapters are short but leave you wanting more.  The only complaint I have is the “reader” of the story.  They disappear and reappear from the narrative at inconsistent intervals.  It made that part seem a bit stretched.  I think it would have been better just to leave this piece of the story out.  Or perhaps to just bookend it with them getting the book  and maybe their reaction to Kip’s story at the end. 

All in all, this book was a quick, enjoyable read.  Clearly it comes from the dark side of the YA shelves, but I felt that you could identify with Kip and that made it work.  The conclusion wasn’t as satisfying as the rest of the book, but if you can ignore the last page, you have a solid read on your hands.

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