Friday, May 15, 2009

Loose Threads by Loria Ann Grover

Grover, Lorie Ann. Loose Threads. New York: McElderry, 2002.

Kay is a normal seventh grader until her grandma finds a lump on her breast. Her life, her mother's, her grandmas, and her great-grandma's all change with these simple words "I found a lump / in my breast" (1). Poems chronicle Kay's struggle to deal with the changes in her life. To understand cancer. To understand herself. To understand her friends. To accept the frailty of life.

What I thought: This book was incredibly moving because it deals with a subject every woman fears: breast cancer. The poignancy of the story increased when I realized the author was writing from her personal experience. Her own grandmother had breast cancer. I've never had anyone close to me die a lingering death, but I can understand it through this book. As Kay cried, I cried. My favorite poem in the book is "Friends." It describes perfectly what this book gives readers.

I read
in the empty time.
I read at doctors' offices.
I read after nightmares.
I read when I hide out in the bathroom
and rest my head against the toilet paper roll.
I turn page after page,
in book after book.
Other kids
suffer in novels.
I'm not the only one.
My stuff
could be worse.
I hold the open book to my face
and breathe deep.
The ink paper smell
fills me up.
Each author
is a friend saying,
"There's hope.
Look." (110-11)

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