Thursday, June 27, 2013

A Trick of the Light

 A Trick of the Light
Lois Metzger
208 pages
Released: June 18, 2013
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Source: the publisher

You can read the Goodreads summary here.

Mike's life is changing rapidly.  His parents are fighting, the girl he likes at school will barely acknowledge him, and he's not as excited about baseball as he used to be.  Then there's a voice in his head, one that wants to help Mike be better at everything.  The voice encourages him to eat less and exercise more... in a very dramatic way.  The voice only wants what's best for Mike, but will Mike listen to it? 

A Trick of the Light gets major props from me because of the point of view it's told from.  It's not exactly third person and it's not exactly first person - instead we read about Mike through the voice in his head, the voice that's trying to keep him anorexic.  It encourages him to eat less and exercise more, to the point where Mike is barely alive.  This was totally unique to me, I'd never read a book from this point of view before and I absolutely loved it.  It completely added to Mike's story and took it to the next level.

I've read a few YA books about easting disorders but, unsurprisingly, they were all about girls.  A Trick of the Light is so special because it takes on a male character with an eating disorder.  Let's not fool ourself, it's definitely something that happens in real life, but has been overlooked for who know's what reason.  I can only hope that it's a topic that will continue to be broached by YA authors.

Mike's story was realistic to be cause it covered all aspects of his life.  Even though his voice and eating disorder were at the forefront of the novel and affected everything he did, we also learned about his parents' unhappy marriage, his mother's mental health and failing business, and of course, the girl Mike wants but can't get and a new friend he makes who is excited to teach him the ways of eating "right."

Four stars!  A Trick of the Light is a short read, but a fantastic one.  It's important to realize that it's not only girls who face these kinds of trials in life and Mike's story was both realistic and enthralling.  I highly recommend this one to contemporary fans.  Read it!

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