The Impossible Knife of Memory, by Louise Halse Anderson
Michelle B. shares this review:
Hayley Kincain spent the formative years of her life cross-country traveling with her veteran father who upon returning from Iraq became a truck driver. Hayley’s father’s experiences in Iraq left him with severe PTSD and as a result Hayley has to take care of him more than he takes care of her.
One day Mr. Kincain decides that for her senior year of high school Hayley should attend a “real” school so they stop traveling and settle down. Hayley hates school, in part because she is afraid of what will happen to her father without her constant presence at home. While she is very hesitant to trust anyone, she finds friendship in Finn, and for the first time, a person she can confide in.
Written in first person, The Impossible Knife of Memory impressively captures the ascerbic wit of a memorable teenager while also handling sensitive topics such as PTSD, abuse, neglect, and addiction remarkably. Anderson includes the harsh realities of these problems in the context of fully fleshed out characters which allows me to empathize more with the characters and see them as people who could be just like me, rather than people with “problems.” Simultaneously hilarious and tragic, The Impossible Knife of Memory is recommended to all lovers of romance and realistic fiction, particularly to those who loved The Fault in Our Stars by John Green.
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