Fear and dominance have ruled seventeen-year-old Sebastians world for the past decade. His father watches his every move and controls everything from what Sebastian eats to what he reads. If its not assigned in his home school program, its inappropriate and a waste of time. If not for the chance to slip out when his father takes sleeping pills at night, Sebastian might forget theres a world outside his New York City apartment.
Maria has been with Carl for seven long years, since she got pregnant when she was fifteen. Shes so used to flinching at the sound of his footsteps, so used to covering the bruises on her arms, shes not sure what to do with a simple, kind glance from a kid on the subway in the middle of the night. Or about the fact that his look seems to mirror her own expression of trapped loneliness.
An intense need for freedom brings together two people who would otherwise have nothing in common. Sebastian and Maria each seem to fan the ember of the others soul. While the flames may be flickering and uncertain, they grow steady and warm. Life! There may still be time to discover the world, and together, Sebastian and Maria might be able to scrape up enough bravery to explore the possibilities.
Every single character in this brilliant book is fully developed, with clear motives, goals, and senses of purpose. The book explores human relationships and fallibilities. What actions are forgivable, and which must be never be forgotten. The fragility of some relationships and the unexpectedly strong bonds that can be overlooked in others.
Catherine Ryan Hyde uses words the way a musician uses an instrument&and what a beautiful and bittersweet song shes composed!
Off to turn another page&.