Friday Finds is hosted by Book Reviews by Bobbie:
We’ll chat about a fascinating book, audiobook, movie, blog, website, etc. It might be trendy or unpopular, old or new…it’s sure to be interesting and it’s hosted by yours truly! Please offer your thoughts on our Friday’s Find and share your own.
My Friday find is an audio book called Burn Journal by Brent Runyon. I came across this book perusing the NetLibrary site. A true story about a depressed boy who tries to commit suicide by dousing his robe in gasoline and setting on fire. He is detailed when talking about the burning, the hospital and how he feels throughout the ordeal.
I found a video of Brent talking about his book:
*Starred Review* Gr. 8-12. On the sixteenth page of this incisive memoir, eighth-grader Brent Runyon drenches his bathrobe with gasoline and ("Should I do it? Yes.") sets himself on fire. The burns cover 85 percent of his body and require six months of painful skin grafts and equally invasive mental-health rehabilitation. From the beginning, readers are immersed in the mind of 14-year-old Brent as he struggles to heal body and mind, his experiences given devastating immediacy in a first-person, present-tense voice that judders from uncensored teenage attitude and poignant anxiety (he worries about getting hard-ons during physical therapy) to little-boy sweetness. And throughout is anguish over his suicide attempt and its impact on his family: "I have this guilt feeling all over me, like oil on one of those birds in Alaska." Runyon has, perhaps, written the defining book of a new genre, one that gazes as unflinchingly at boys on the emotional edge as Zibby O'Neal's The Language of Goldfish (1980) and Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak (1999) do at girls. Some excruciatingly painful moments notwithstanding, this can and should be read by young adults, as much for its literary merit as for its authentic perspective on what it means to attempt suicide, and, despite the resulting scars, be unable to remember why. Jennifer Mattson
Burn Journal Website