London Castle is utterly and completely lost. She and Zach had spent the last sixteen years together traveling the world with their missionary parents, tied solely to each other and their faith. And now Zach is utterly and completely gone.
Through extraordinary poetic storytelling, the reader discovers pieces of the past nine months little by little. And little by little, Zach's relationship with Rachel, London's love for them and for Taylor, and the Castle family dynamic all begin to come together to form the tragedy of misunderstanding, depression, and pure grief. But there are bright spots, too, that fill in the gaps. London finds Lilli and Jesse (or maybe they find her), and she begins to gain back some of the faith, strength, and love that she just assumed would be gone from her forever now that her brother is gone. But she also allows herself to gain little pieces of Zach back into her life, too -- the good and the bad.
This is a novel filled with beautiful words and ugly emotions, and it's the perfect read for teens who love tearjerkers and who can handle brutal honesty and the terrifying reality of depression. Not for all, but wonderful for some. (I wish that there had been more of a conclusion with or explanation of Jesse, but overall, I loved this book. It's a quick read that packs a major punch.)
Reviewed by kate the librarian.
The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
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