Monday, September 06, 2010

Sleepless in Arizona

YA is a tough category to get right. I’m probably not in the audience that most YA authors think of when they set out, but I do read YA. Sometimes I’m disappointed, but usually I enjoy the stories. So this time, when I picked a book at random from the library shelf and discovered it was YA, it didn’t really bother me. I took it home.

DC Pierson’s story The Boy Who Couldn’t Sleep and Never Had to is about Darren and Eric and Christine, and how Darren managed to make a mess of things. Darren is in high school, doing his level best to hide how weird he is from his class mates, when he meets Eric, the boy who can’t sleep, and finally there is someone he can relate to, except then Christine shows up, and everything changes again.

Pierson’s prose makes it easy to empathize with Darren. The story maintains a nice and even pace, even towards the end when a lot of things are happening all at once. It’s got truancy and sex and drugs and fighting, so your high school library probably won’t have the book because Mrs Defarge of the PTA would throw a fit, but if you’re in high school you probably won’t be shocked to read that things like truancy and sex and drugs and fighting happen in high school.

Give the book a shot, whether you’re in high school or whether you’re planning your 40 year high school reunion. I think you’ll like it.


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