Fifteen-year-old Kenny Wilson wants nothing more than to get out of Comfort, Texas—fast. Only three things stand in his way: getting enough money together, convincing Cindy Blackwell to go with him, and escaping the clawlike grip of his mother.
Amidst these problems, Kenny must also contend with tumultuous feelings about his alcoholic father (newly released from prison) and his growing guilt over leaving his baby brother behind in a wake of dysfunction. But as life at home becomes even more unbearable and threatens to destroy his plans, he is determined not to lose his dreams to a lifetime of waiting tables in his mama’s rundown café. Propelled by desire and despair, Kenny discovers the power of words and how they can change lives in ways he never dared to hope for. He comes to realize that there’s a time to stop running and take a stand.
Okay Novel That Was More Than A Light Read
Comfort by Carolee Dean
Publication Date: March 2002
3.5 out of 5 stars
PG-13 Sexual References, Alcohol Abuse, Brief Profanity, and Violence
High school student Kenny is forced by his selfish mother to help at their family owned cafÃ©. He is a member of the family so he helps out, but when his mother who has already taken away football and band declares he is not allowed to enter the one contest that may help him escape his mama, she goes to far. With the return of his alcoholic father who was just released from prison, Kenny realizes the time for escape from his lying father and abusive mother is shortening. All he has to do is come up with 300 more dollars and a way to get Cindy Blackwell to run away with him. But his prison guard-like mother isnt the only thing holding him back, its the guilt and knowledge that he is leaving his toddler brother in the very same unloving conditions hes trying to escape.
Comfort was an okay novel that explored a high school boys actions and thoughts while living in an abusive environment.
The main character, Kenny, was realistic though a little blind-sighted to lifes joys. He had hopes and dreams of escape that appeared more tantalizing after every demeaning humiliation. Kenny was a caring person when he chose to be, but could also be hard and stubborn. He was a human being barely enduring the stress and torment. A character who I wanted to pity but knew he had a lesson to learn first.
The twists in the plot are what kept the novel moving. If this book hadnt served the occasional slap to the unsuspecting face, I could have easily joined Kenny in his hurting world with little hope of escaping.
I enjoyed the insightful lesson the author centered the book around. From page 171, Your words have power, Kenny. They can give people hope, and courage, and confidence. And they need that. The fact that something you say can effect other people around you is an uncommonly shared, but true actuality. Words have power, we just need to know how to use them.
I recommend Comfort for teens who wish to read a book thats more than a light-read.
Date Reviewed: December 23rd, 2008
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