BRUISES by Anke de Vries


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Age Range: 12 & up
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 A searing novel--sometimes painful to read, impossible to put down--about two troubled young people in Holland. Judith's mother beats her--has always beaten her. Judith lives in terror, watching her mother, anticipating her moods, waiting for her to turn into a monster--``The waiting was often the worst part.'' Even harder, for readers, is that Judith condemns herself for being unable to stop the abuse. Michael's abuse has been of a psychological nature; after his mother's death years before, he withered under the disapproval of his cold and critical father. When Judith meets him, at age 12, Michael has learned to cope with dyslexia and is blossoming under the care of a loving aunt. He befriends Judith at school and offers her a way out of her prison. In terrible, stark detail, de Vries describes Judith's abuse; the writing is taut, immediate, and emotionally charged. Although the story is grim, it exhibits occasional flashes of humor that make it bearable; readers will be glad (and relieved) that it ends on a hopeful note. (Fiction. 12+)

Pub Date: April 1st, 1996
ISBN: 1-886910-03-0
Page count: 168pp
Publisher: Lemniscaat/Boyds Mills
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 1996


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