Saturday, January 3, 2015

Laura Moriarty - The Center of Everything

1. The Center of Everything by Laura Moriarty (2003)
Length: 339 pages
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Started: 1 January 2015
Finished: 3 January 2015
Where did it come from? From Bookmooch 
How long has it been on my TBR pile? Since 29 December 2014
Why do I have it? I like contemporary fiction and have read and enjoyed The Rest of Her Life: A Novel by the same author in the past.

In The Center of Everything, Laura Moriarty's stunning debut novel, a young girl tries to make sense of the unruly world around her. Ten-year-old Evelyn Brucknow has never really had much of a childhood, having been forced to pretty much take care of herself for most of her life. She lives with her single mother, Tina, in a small apartment in Kansas and just can't help dreaming of more for herself.

Though she is warm and loving, and values her daughter more than anything else in the world, Tina is nevertheless young, immature, and prone to making rash financial decisions. This personality type often leaves Evelyn feeling as if she is the rational adult in their troubled relationship. Growing up with a chronically out of work mother, whose most recent romance with her married boss has failed and left her jobless and desperate, Evelyn feels more and more anxious about their increasingly precarious financial situation. She resolves to distance herself from her mother's irresponsibility as much as she can.

However, Evelyn just can not escape the claustrophobic feeling of being stuck where she is - somewhere in the middle of Kansas - between her best friends, and in the midst of her mother's love...right in the center of everything. The Center of Everything by Laura Moriarty is an extraordinary and affecting portrayal of a troubled mother/daughter relationship, as well as an eye-opening look at life in a small midwestern town. All this is experienced and seen through the eyes of a teenage girl; who also must come to terms with the heartbreaking lesson of first love - that not all loves are meant to be - and determine who she is and who she wants to be.

I absolutely loved this book and found myself completely immersed in the story right away. This book held my attention from beginning to end, and was one of those books that I never wanted to end. Although the plot wasn't all that action-packed - it was basically about living life in a small town, and the various trials and tribulations faced by the struggling residents - it still moved along at a leisurely pace and was a thoroughly enjoyable read for me. I give this book a definite A+! 

I think that Ms. Moriarty is a terrific writer and I am eagerly awaiting her next book - what ever it might be.

A+! - (96-100%)
Till we Meet Again, Glow Brightly as Moonlight

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