Staff Review - Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands by Chris Bohjalian

This review was contributed by St. George Staff Member SueCat.

You can't judge a book by its title which is certainly true of this story.  Keywords jumped out of the summary and hooked my interest: teenage runawaynuclear plant meltdowndrunkEmily Dickinsonstealingyoung homeless boy.  From the first page, I was thrust into the world of a sixteen-year-old girl determined to survive in the aftermath of her town's destruction when the nuclear plant her father was in charge of experienced a meltdown.  Fearing she will be persecuted for the disaster, Emily tries to change her identity and lives in shelters on the street.  When she befriends a nine-year-old boy on the run from a bad foster home, Emily realizes she has an opportunity to perhaps make one person's world not so terrible.

This is an extremely candid narrative with strong language and a main character similar to J.D. Salinger's protagonist, Holden Caulfield, from Catcher in the Rye.  It would be a great read for adults and mature teen readers who enjoy a timeless coming-of-age story.


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