Sometimes I feel hunted by my grief. It circles me, stalks me. It's always in my periphery. Sometimes I can fake it out. Sometimes I make myself go so still, it can't sense that I'm there anymore and it goes away.
Eddie's father committed suicide and Eddie has no idea why. He gave no obvious signs of his distress, and Eddie wants to know why her father took his life. In fact, the very question of why dominates her thoughts. She often finds herself going off to the site where he took his life and trying to figure it out.
It's here that she meets Culler Evans, a photography student of her father's she never knew he had. An attraction quickly develops between them and Eddie realizes Culler may know more about why her father took his life than she does.
Fall for Anything is a look at the life of a young teenage girl in the aftermath of her father's suicide. It's an unflinching look...Eddie is in a lot of pain and every word burns with it. Her mother is nonfunctional in her grief, and her best friend Milo's ex-girlfriend is back in town. This is complicated for Eddie, because while she doesn't have romantic feelings for Milo he often spends more time with his ex-girlfriend leaving her lonely.
I loved this book, which feels like a bizarre thing to say because it is very intense and it's sad. But that heartbreaking sadness is also its appeal...it's impossible not to feel buckets of sympathy for Eddie and also hope. There are moments when she's considering the different reasons her father might have committed suicide and it's so achingly sad because the reasons don't seem strong enough or possible at all. Also there are scenes where Eddie visualizes herself having sex with Culler (not in any detail) and I found this to be such a true description of that kind of teenage girl attraction--where you're not entirely sure what it all means but you want it and in Eddie's case...I think she desperately wants to feel. And she wants to be close to this one other person who knew a part of her father that she didn't and that's so well demonstrated in all of this mixed-up attraction she's feeling for him.
And the way her friends are...unable to fully acknowledge the way this has shattered her life and unable to talk about it or when they do talk about it is very clumsily handles--everything just felt realistic.
BUT it's not all doom and gloom. I loved Eddie's friendship with Milo. There's some romance and just general growing up stuff. There's a kind of mystery as well. And what I so love about Summers's books is that they never wrap up easily. This is just a look at one part of Eddie's journey. The ending was perfect...the only way it really could have been.
Courtney Summers writes books so vivid and intense where each word immerses you deeply into the mind of the protagonist. I always felt shocked when I had to set the book down to realize it wasn't real. It's powerful, heartwrenching, and not to be missed.
Things You Might Want to Know: A fair bit of profanity and some sexual situations.
Source of Book: Received from publisher for review
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Review: Fall for Anything by Courtney Summers
Book Reviews|Young Adult|