Review Detail

Sign Language FeaturedHot
Young Adult Fiction 5081
Sign Language
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Thank you to author Amy Ackley for allowing me the opportunity to read and review this book! It took me a little while longer to get through this one for several reasons, the first being the subject matter and knowing it was based on the author's own experience with losing her own father to cancer. The other was having been a witness on the sidelines as my husband and his siblings watched their father fight a losing battle with pancreatic cancer in 2005.

This is a well written, moving story of one young girl's journey through death and grief after losing her father to cancer. While Abbey's story is a heartbreaking one, it is not a hopeless one. "Sign Language" is told from Abby's point of view and follows her life from the ages of 12-17 not only dealing with the slow process of her father's illness and passing but the normal challenges that come with being a teenager.

Ackley does an excellent job of bringing the reader into the heart of the story and describes the gradual dying process so vividly that you feel as if you're experiencing all the raw emotion that Abby is. (We are big Star Wars fans here and needless to say, I will never look at "Darth" the same way again.)

Abby's surrounded by people who love and care for her, like her mother, older siblings, Deanna and Josh, Spence (her longtime BFF), her friend Leise and even grumpy old Aunt Fran. Her family isn't the most demonstrative which makes it difficult for Abby to express how she's feeling, causing her to bottle things up inside. She regularly consults her Magic 8 Ball for signs or answers (who hasn't, right?) but still can't seem to find what she's searching for. School is her haven and the one place she feels she can still maintain a sense of normalcy. The only friends that know about her Dad and how serious he is are Spence and Leise and neither of them will betray her.

Her mom does the best she can but is dealing with her own feelings and Josh is the typical older brother who acts annoyed that Abby even exists most of the time but he has his moments. Deanna is Abby's older sister who is called into town occasionally to stay with she and Josh and while she's preferred over Aunt Fran, she's hardly the epitome of responsibility.

Spence is the most consistent friend in Abby's life and is like a second brother to her. He likes being around her family because his own home life isn't so great. Abby's father, Sam has even stepped in for Spence's absentee father over the years. Spence is kind, loyal and hard working and readily helps Abby's Mom and brother Josh around the house when it's apparent that her Dad no longer can. (Did I mention that we love him?!) He's the type of guy who likes to "fix things" and would do just about anything to be able to fix what's going on in Abby's life. By the time high school rolls around he and Abby have grown even closer and it's obvious to everyone that his feelings for her go beyond friendship even if Abby is somewhat oblivious.

Leise remains a good friend to Abby, even at the height of her grief when she seems bent on pushing everyone who cares about her away. She's a great example of what it means to be a true friend and we should all be lucky to have someone like her in our lives.

A good portion of the book is spent on the relationship Abby has with her Dad, one that was full happy times spent together creating good memories. She struggles with the realization that he won't be there for some the major milestones in her life and it's those times that your heart breaks for her all over again. Abby's journey has really only just begun at the end of the book but her perspective is different.

"Sign Language" is a must read in my opinion, especially for anyone whose lost a loved one to cancer. This story shows that while losing a loved one is painful and life goes on, that person lives on in our memories, in our hearts and there are signs everywhere to remind us of them.
Good Points
Knowing the story is based on author Ackley's own experience gives authenticity to the characters and the storyline.
Report this review Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

Comments

1 results - showing 1 - 1
Ordering
Already have an account? or Create an account
February 02, 2012
Thank you for the lovely review! I'm so glad you enjoyed Sign Language.
1 results - showing 1 - 1
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

A Curse of Roses
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
Based on Portuguese legend, this #OwnVoices historical fantasy is an...
I Don't Want to Wash my Hands!
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
From beloved children's author and illustrator Tony Ross, comes a...
Dance Like a Leaf
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
As her grandmother's health declines, a young girl begins to...
The Bitterwine Oath
 
3.3 (2)
 
0.0 (0)
San Solano, Texas, is a quaint town known for...
Sing Like No One's Listening
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
A moving YA debut about a talented young singer...
Heiress Apparently (Daughters of the Dynasty, #1)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The first book in an epic and romantic YA...
The Good Girls
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
One of Us Is Lying meets Sadie in this...
Frozen 2: Dangerous Secrets: The Story of Iduna and Agnarr
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Sixteen-year-old Iduna harbors a dark secret. On the surface,...
The Camelot Betrayal
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
The second book in a new fantasy trilogy from...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Every summer, they say goodbye. Dorit goes to Tel Aviv...
Incredible Animals
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
In this illustrated guide, discover fascinating and unusual information about...
Special Delivery
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
A lovely book to share with children in an expecting...
Eyelike Stickers: Trains
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Hundreds of irresistible, reusable, and collectible stickers to mix, match,...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
It is twenty years since the events of La Belle...
Winter Light
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
WINTER LIGHT is the story of 15-year-old Mary Donahue...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Fight like a magical girl in this paperback original contemporary...

Latest Member Reviews

Golden Curse (The True Story of Rapunzel)
 
5.0
"This beautiful story is highly enjoyable. The writing flows easily, and the characters feel relatable. The main conflict was interesting..."
The Devil's Apprentice
 
4.5
"This was actually a pretty interesting story. At first I really wasn't sure how it was going to go so..."
Mastery of Earth (Legends of the Tri-Gard Book 3)
 
5.0
"Oh the feels this book gave me. Davi's officially back but still not really? His memories are all over the..."
Glass Princess
 
5.0
"This second entry was good, well technically fifth. I am really glad that the story picked up right after the..."
Sting Magic
 
4.8
"What a start to the series! Sting Magic by Sarah K.L. Wilson is a fantastic, quick read that takes you..."
Fae's Prisoner (Crimes of the Fae)
 
5.0
"This is the book I didn’t know I needed! Fae’s Prisoner by M. Lynn & Melissa A. Craven is the..."
Fae's Prisoner (Crimes of the Fae)
 
5.0
"After reading Queens of the Fae, I had such mixed feelings about Griffin... but now I love him! This book..."
Glass Kingdom
 
5.0
"I don't even know where to start with this book. I practically finished it in one day (and I would..."
Fae Hunter
 
4.5
"An enjoyable tale of a young woman who loses her sister and her sight to the Fae, but that is..."
Legacy of Light (Legends of the Tri-Gard Book 2)
 
4.8
"FEEDBACK Well, this story has gone in a completely different direction than I expected it to. Davion didn’t die..."
Call of the Rift: Flight
 
4.3
"The Call of the Rift: Flight by Jae Waller is the first book in an alternate-historical fantasy about Kateiko, a..."
Glass Kingdom
 
5.0
"I have read many Cinderella retellings in my life. It's a story I have always loved and been drawn to...."
Two Worlds of Provenance (Two Worlds, #1)
 
4.0
"An intriguing world. The story: Maray is an American girl living in Vienna with just..."
Golden Crown
 
5.0
"This series has blown me away. For those who don't know me, I am low key obsessed with Tangled. And..."
Golden Chains
 
5.0
"All right, so I loved Golden Curse, but I LOVED this second book. The story picks..."
Magic Bound
 
5.0
"Selene was born a blank, a witch with no powers, so she is abandoned on the doorstep of a shifter..."
Fae Hunter
 
5.0
"Dark and twisted doesn’t even touch the surface of Sarah K.L. Wilson‘s new release Fae Hunter. This enchanting tale captivated..."
Of Beast and Beauty
 
3.8
"When Rosalie is forced to marry Prince Xander if Baist, she didn't know what to except with her new title..."
First Earth: Book One in the Arch Mage Series
 
5.0
""Agnes' journey not only kept me turning pages, but pulled me into the journey of self-discovery right along with her...."
Heart of Mist
 
5.0
"The story: Bleak is a drunken thief who is desperately trying to find a way to cure herself from..."