Friday, February 01, 2013
Perfect Escape, by Jennifer Brown
It's Rain Man for the YA crowd, but with more pathos and grit. As a story, it's fairly typical road trip stuff (some misadventures, the mandatory side trip, and a wind-down at the end), but the characters make it come alive. I found Kendra to be a bit of a pill -- the idea that she ever thought the idea of fleeing across the country was a good one defies belief, so that when she later on comes to "realize" her mistake, I cringed. But beyond the sheer implausibility of her character, I liked the rest of it. Grayson is an interesting character by himself (far more self-aware and assertive than we usually presume of the mentally-ill) and the rapport that he has with his sister is authentic and enticing.