Dear Edward by Ann Napolitano
I received this as a BotM selection in December 2019. I started it, got to page 18 (I know because the bookmark was still there) and then realized that a book involving a plane crash was probably not the best reading material when I was mere days from boarding a plane myself. So, back onto the shelf it went.
I really hadn’t intended to leave it for so long, but life happens and other shiny new books can be distracting. But my local library’s book club picked Dear Edward as their December selection so it was the perfect time to rescue it from the shelf.
Honestly, I had no idea how anyone could make a book that involves a 12-year-old boy being the only survivor of a plane crash that kills the rest of his family anything but a depressing slog, but I was very pleasantly surprised to find myself riveted by this story. The chapters alternate between the time on the plane leading up to the crash, and Edward’s life in the following weeks, months, and years. By not having a straight linear timeline, the author gives us brief reprieves from the mounting pre-crash tension.
There is so much to love about this book, mostly because it is about love in its many forms. It also deals with grief and loss and survival, but for me the main thing I took away was a great appreciation for the many ways love can be expressed, large and small.
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