Thursday, March 19, 2015

Throwback Thursday (#1): Shark Girl by Kelly Bingham



Let's travel back to December 30,2010 and my review of Shark Girl by Kelly Bingham
 

Release date: April 10, 2007
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Age group: YA
Pages: 288

Description (from Gooreads):

A teenager struggles through physical loss to the start of acceptance in an absorbing, artful novel at once honest and insightful, wrenching and redemptive.

On a sunny day in June, at the beach with her mom and brother, fifteen-year-old Jane Arrowood went for a swim. And then everything — absolutely everything — changed. Now she’s counting down the days until she returns to school with her fake arm, where she knows kids will whisper, "That’s her — that’s Shark Girl," as she passes. In the meantime there are only questions: Why did this happen? Why her? What about her art? What about her life? In this striking first novel, Kelly Bingham uses poems, letters, telephone conversations, and newspaper clippings to look unflinchingly at what it’s like to lose part of yourself - and to summon the courage it takes to find yourself again.


MY REVIEW FROM DECEMBER 30, 2010
 
Shark Girl, a debut novel by Kelly Bingham, is a book that you cannot put down. A beautiful, heart breaking and inspiring story written in verse will make you cry, laugh and honour your life, just as it is. 

On a normal summer day Jane goes to the beach with her mother and Michael. At the morning when she woke up she never though that that day would change her life...for good. Jane goes to swim and after 10 days in coma she wakes up in a hospital bed without her left arm. Everything she has dreamed about changes.

For years Jane has been the best artist of her school, winning prices from her art pieces. Now, without her right hand, she feels like that part of her life, the part she loved the most, is over. In hospital Jane meets Justin, a 11 year old boy who's other leg has been amputated. Through Justin, inspirational letters by others who have gone through the same and through the support of her friends and family she tries to build her world again. 

But none of the support is enough if she herself isn't ready to face her loss.

As mentioned before, "Shark Girl" is a novel written in verse. It is Bingham's debut novel and I must say how positively surprised I was about the language, the story, everything. The novel is so beautifully written it keeps you reading until you reach the end, and even then, you want for more. Bingham's description of Jane and her feelings is heart-breaking and it really makes you feel happy about the things you have. Shark Girl is also an inspirational story about how we all should accept ourselves as we are, because sometimes the things in us we don't like are ones that we cannot change. We just need to get along with them to be happy.
 
 

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