The Odds of Lightning Featured
A bolt of lightning inspires an incredible journey in this charming, magical realism adventure that takes four teens on an all-night journey through the streets of New York City. Extraordinary things happen when we least expect them. Tiny, Lu, Will and Nathaniel used to be best friends. Then life-defining events the summer before high school tore them apart. Now, three years later, they hardly talk anymore. Nathaniel has become obsessed with winning the prestigious science scholarship that his genius older brother once won. Will has risen from anonymity to popular soccer star. Lu grew into a brash, impetuous actress. And shy, poetic Tiny has slowly been fading away. But fate weaves their lives together again the night before the SATs, during a wild thunderstorm that threatens to shut down New York City. And lightning strikes. Before they know what's hit them, the four teens embark on an epic all-night adventure to follow their dreams, fall in and out of love, reconcile the past, and overcome the fears that have been driving them since that one lost summer. And by the time the sun rises, odds are they’ll discover that there’s a fine line between science and magic, and that the mysteries of love and friendship can’t be explained.
The Odds of Lightning
THE ODDS OF LIGHTNING by Jocelyn Davies is a fun coming of age story as told by four different protagonists, Tiny, Lu, Will, and Nathaniel. Each teenager is struggling with his or her own identity crisis that has grown exponentially over the past three years, during which they have stopped being friends. However, on a fateful night before the SAT’s, they are all struck by lightning and change in magical ways. As they cannot go to the hospital for help, they must count on each other and themselves to survive and to make it to the test on time.
The book itself deals with some heavy issues teens face without trivializing them or watering them down. To Davies’ credit, she represents the plights of these characters in a fair way and many people on the cusp of adulthood will be able to relate. How do I fit in? Who am I going to be? Will I lose myself? Will I let myself be vulnerable? These are all questions the characters ask themselves. On the other hand, the plot is adventurous and light, which keeps the story from getting too serious, and the setting is New York City, practically a fifth character in the book. Honestly, it seems going to high school there would be anything but boring.
With that being said, the book is predictable in many ways and feels vaguely reminiscent of stories that have come before. However, maybe for this particular genre, that is fine. The main purpose of this genre should be to remind others that they are not alone in what they are going through, which it does. It also has the added benefit of being very entertaining and quick to read. Overall, THE ODDS OF LIGHTNING highlights the often fraught high school experience and in the end, leaves the reader with hope.