Hardcover, 352 pages
Published May 1st 2012 by Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
Source: Borrowed from library
Synopsis From Goodreads:
After her brother’s death, a teen struggles to rediscover love and find redemption in this gripping novel.
Growing up in Africa and Latin America as the children of missionaries, London and Zach were as close as could be. And then Zach dies, and the family is gutted. London’s father is distant. Her mother won’t speak. The days are filled with what-ifs and whispers: Did Zach take his own life? Was it London’s fault?
Alone and adrift, London finds herself torn between her brother’s best friend and the handsome new boy in town as she struggles to find herself—and ultimately redemption—in this authentic and affecting novel from award-winning novelist Carol Lynch Williams.
Waiting should come with a box of tissues. It is certainly one of the most heart wrenching books I have ever read. The subject matter is heavy, as I expected, and it's just so sad. Waiting is written in verse and is a very quick read. I loved the flow of the writing, and the story felt so real and believable.
I really felt for London and what she was going through. Her grief was so overwhelming and all consuming. She is one of those people who feels every emotion so strongly that it makes it a struggle just to get through the day. She had a very tough journey through some really hard times, and you can't help but want her to come out stronger on the other side.
I liked London's new friends, Lili and Jesse. They seemed to know what London needed more than her old friends did. And Zach's best friend, Taylor, really wanted what was best for London. He was very caring, and he felt Zach's loss as much as London did. There was really no love triangle. It was more like which way does London want to travel - the hard road or the easy road. The easy way would be to pursue a relationship with Jesse. He is new to town and being with him doesn't bring back memories of her brother. However much she really want to be with Taylor, it is painful because so many of her memories of Zach are tied up with him.
Waiting is a look at the absolute worst part of a family that is grieving the loss of one member. It is a challenge just to get through each day. They are all so dysfunctional, but none of them seek the professional help that is desperately needed. London's mother is absolutely off her rocker and needed some serious mental help. She completely falls apart after Zach's death, and no one can get through to her. She hasn't spoken to London in a year because she blames London for her brother's death. The Dad isn't much help. He buries his head in the sand and tries to pretend his family hasn't fallen apart. Through London's memories, we learn that Zach had problems of his own that their parents tried to pray away. Taking some sort of action (as opposed to praying) would have helped this family tremendously.
Overall, I did enjoy reading Waiting. Once I started, I couldn't stop reading because I wanted to know what had caused so much turmoil in this family. It was painful at times, and eye opening, but I had to learn the truth. It was an emotional journey, and I loved that the ending was both hopeful and bittersweet.
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars