This week, three books I had had on hold for weeks or even months all showed up at the library. What to do? Each must be returned within three weeks, and they are all so popular that I can't renew them.
I decided to start with Gin Phillips' Fierce Kingdom, which is about a mother and her four-year-old son who are trapped at the zoo when a shooting breaks out. Oh. My. GOD.
What a great book! It has been forever since I fell headlong into a book. Reading it was like a fever dream. I didn't edit in my head, didn't question word choices. I just loved it. It was like being a kid again, when books were pure magic and I didn't even know there were tricks tucked in sleeves.
And I did something I haven't done in years: I decided to stay up as late as it took to finish it.
It was totally worth the lack of sleep.
Here are some examples of her writing (some are screen shots, some I typed in):
Check out how repeition makes things more powerful.
"This girl's bones feel like china, like blown glass, like handles on teacups. The girl feels like all kinds of precious things."
"People say she's a nice girl. She makes mostly A's and B's. Hardly ever C's. She saves her money in the bank. But now she wishes that she were the kind of girl who set things on fire instead of the kind of girl who proofreads her work. She wishes she knew how to scare people. She wishes she had worked yesterday instead of today, and she wishes she carried pepper spray like her mother has told her she should, and she wishes she had an Almond Joy, cold, and she wishes she were home in bed and her pillows were fluffed, and she wishes she had grabbed that little boy Lincoln and run with him and saved him, and she wishes she were a woman in a video game with pistols on her hips and cleavage . She wishes her father could still pick her up and carry her, but she is too heavy."
And I love the rhythm of her sentences - long galloping ones followed by short declarative ones.
This was a five-star book for me!