Friday, April 13, 2012

Letters from the Ledge Review

Date Published: January 11, 2012
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Page Number: 386
Publisher: Hallway 11
First Thoughts:
The instant I read the summary for this book I wanted to read it, it sounded so powerful, so psychological that I definitely wanted to check it out and I'm glad I did. I mean just reading the title of this book it gave you a sense of how this book was going to mess with your mind and your emotions. There were plenty of scenes I have taken to heart and will never forget and believe it or not I think this book taught me a thing or two about myself and others. A definite read I'd recommend to all those who are just beginning to discover themselves and make their mark on this world.
The plot was intense and emotional at times, though I didn't really cry in this book it did dig it's claws deep within me and made me FEEL. Some books will leave a mark on me and this is one of them, so much happened, so much raw emotion was unveiled that it literally made me stop and really think about what was going on in these four lives. I'll admit there were times I had to stop reading and just take a break, there's just so much I can take in one sitting. I would lightly set it aside and read a more "light" read and once I was back to semi-normal I picked it back up and finished it. It definitely had a lot of twisting plots and sub-plots; it really told a great story. One thing I found off for me was ending, there was something mentioned at the end that I'm still unsure of what it meant, I don't know if it was a small detail mentioned early on and I forgot or perhaps it's just me but either way I didn't understand it. Perhaps one day I'll go back and re-read it and see if I can find it out but until then I'll have to leave it at that. As far as the rest of the plot I thought it was well played out and found it a good and steady read.
What to say about these characters? There was so much to them, I literally believe there are people just like them out there, it was like the author took a real live person and implanted them into this book, it was just so realistic and true to a person...kind of made me shudder. And besides the realistic nature to them I loved that they made mistakes, it wasn't like anyone of them were perfect, the author created flaws, imperfections. I can't tell you how many times I've read a book where a lot of the characters were painted in this factory perfect light, it's one of the flaws I hate in a book, I personally like a good idealistic and realistic character, one worth  rooting for and boy did this author do good in this aspect! As for the connection of character to reader there definitely were some strong connections, the way the author created really made it hard for the reader to not connect to them. So overall I loved the characters and as for the minor characters they were well placed and added to the overall plot.
Transformation of Character:
There were some major transformations that took place by the end of this book, I'm not going to mention to whom and what they were (that would be a spoiler and I just don't do that) but they were believable and beautiful, I really liked the tactics this author chose to really made them more substantial and stronger. Guess there really isn't much I can say in this aspect without spoiling it but just know the transformations were amazing.
The author did a fantastic job with description, she not only described each scene but she also did a good job in the aspect of the mind of the character. The way she described how the character was feeling was very well executed. As far as the amount of it I didn't really find any problems with too much or too little, there were a few scenes where I wished there would have been a deeper description but other than that I didn't have any problems with it. In fact she did very well in describing the world they were living in, I've never lived or even been to New York but the way she described the city it makes me believe I was there.
Brilliant! Loved the lyrical style to this book, it's one of the things that made me enjoy it so much. As for the POV's I liked them but I found it a little bit awkward at times when the views were switched. Most of the time they were good and I enjoyed each view don't get me wrong but I found that some of the times that it switched to another characters that it should have waited just a little bit longer...As far as the writing itself I found it beautiful and smooth, it wasn't choppy or awkward, it was simply just beautiful to read. And I just loved the little quotes at the top of each chapter, they were so inspirational and perfect you can definitely tell they were handpicked with care. So overall I enjoyed this author's style, especially the writing itself.
Quote of the Book:
"The memories always seemed to hit like a flash flood. They came out of nowhere and buried all her senses under muddy water until she couldn't see and could barely breathe. In that thick, murky place she had to try to find something to grab hold of, because when the water subsided it formed a whirlpool that threatened to suck her back down into its depths, lost forever to the light."
Goodreads Summary:
Still reeling from the suicide of his best friend Tess, seventeen-year old Brendan struggles to overcome addiction and identity issues. Walking the ledge outside his Manhattan apartment has become its own sort of drug, as he stands night after night with his arms outstretched, ready to fly away. Sarah can see him from her window, and begins journaling about a boy on a ledge. Paige and Nate, a young couple in another building, can see both teens from their fire escape. None of them know the others are watching, but a strong desire for freedom resides in each of them, and as their lives begin to intertwine, that desire will be tested. Anyone can jump, but not everyone can fly... Sharp, humorous, and deeply layered, this chronicle of a suicidal teen’s survival explores the reality of addiction and other tough issues, but does so easily, through the use of multiple perspectives, intelligent dialogue and authentic characters. Equal parts romance, contemporary drama, and coming of age, this highly engaging and intensely beautiful novel challenges our cultural perceptions in the battle for balance.
Last Thoughts:
I would recommend this to readers who love realistic stories and to those who love to read writing that in a way mimics poetry just without the confusion of what it was about. I really enjoyed the fact that I could obviously see how much this author cared about her characters, the way she treated and supported them really shined through. She took care on creating this story that could both support all of the characters and allow the reader to enjoy it at the same time. I definitely will be looking for further writings by this author, this was a slower read for me but that's only because of the deepness and rawness of it, to some it won't necessarily affect them in the same way as it did me but I do hope it does...this book just has so much to offer to the reader if only their willing to accept it.
My Rating:

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