Thursday, November 10, 2016

Friend, Natasha. Where You’ll Find Me.

Friend, Natasha.  Where You’ll Find Me.  Macmillan/Farrar Strauss  2016 264p  $16.99  ISBN 978-0-374-30230-6  ms/hs  Realistic Fiction  VG-BN     

Anna’s parents only split up a year ago, yet her dad is already remarried (to a 24-year-old named Marnie) and has a new baby. When Anna’s mother’s depression spirals out of control and she attempt to take her own life, Anna (who found her mother that way) is forced to live with her dad, Marnie, and baby Jane. Her best friend, Dani, has dumped her to hang out with the popular crowd, and Anna just can’t bring herself to talk about her mom. All she wants is for things to go back to the way they were. She is forced to sit at the weirdo table at lunch and can’t talk to her dad. As the weeks go by, and her mother’s diagnosis is corrected, things start to take a turn for the better. Maybe the “weirdos” are actually really nice girls who bring Anna out of her shell. Maybe her mom really needed help and can’t be the mom she needs right now. And maybe Marnie can be a real friend to Anna, and can help Anna and her dad reconnect. This book is a solid read and relatable for anyone who has suffered with mental illness or had a family member who has done so. Everything does not turn out the way a fairy tale would, but very realistically instead, and Anna is able to discover who she is and what she can contribute to the world. There is some rough language, so keep this in upper middle schools and high schools. Overall, it would be a great addition to any library.

Summary: Anna is suddenly living with her dad, her new 24-year-old stepmother and a half sister, baby Jane, after finding her mom passed out next to a bottle of pills. To make things worse, her best friend since kindergarten has dumped her for the popular crowd, and Anna is stuck at the weirdo table at lunch. Can the new year bring positive changes?

Mental illness-Fiction, Divorce-Fiction               --Erin Daley

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