Friday, March 23, 2012

Book To Look For: Split by Mel Bossa

The Futility of Fighting Fate

Derek O'Rielly's aunt has cancer, and in her process of sorting out their family memories she comes across Derek's childhood journal.

Derek has not thought of that journal or what he wrote in it for years. He is settled in his life now. He's with a man that is beautiful, successful, that wants him (although he's not sure why), so he should be happy. The thing is the moment Derek reads the first entry all the memories of his childhood come flooding back. One memory is particular changes Derek's contentment with his life.

The Lunds, the family that lived across the street. His friend Boone who was his same age and got him in so much trouble, Lene the little sister who was a bit crazy and more than a little infatuated with him, Helga and Johan the parents who actually provided Derek with a lot of the affection his parents never seemed able to give...and Nick...Nicolai Lund, the most important one of all. Boone's older brother and the object of Derek's every desire.

Derek revisits his youth through his journal, all the good and the bad memories. The hurt and the happy he put it all in those entries written to Bump. Bump, the baby that was growing in his mom's belly but never came home. The baby who also took with him the light out of his mom eyes for good, and destroyed the happiness of his home. Derek was a sad and lonely child and the only genuine love that he received for most of his life came from his Aunt Frannie and from the Lunds. Remembering them adult Derek recovered a lot of the light in his own life he had allowed to seep through, and once and for all he was compelled to do something about his own happiness.

This book has such an interesting and creative style. We go back and forth between Derek's 11 year POV and his 28 present POV. How the realizations of his feelings towards Nick dawn on him are fantastic. The description of the actual physical reactions that Nick's presence had on Derek are SOOOO heartwarming and adorable, loved that.

Nick was a troubled boy, with a lot of anger, he was destined to fall through the cracks and he ended up disappearing completely from Derek's life. The whole Lund clan did. Until one day fate put him back in touch with the people that he was always meant to have in his life. Nick too.

I loved this book for how different it is, and for how tangible the emotions were, especially from Derek he was such a touching character fully developed and engaging. I was not always happy with him, but I always felt like I understood him. And his reconnecting with Nick was lovely. The writing style in this book changed to something incredibly poetic when the time for Nick and Derek to be reunited came. Such pretty writing.

Loved this book and would totally recommend it!