When a teen is left on her own to care for herself and her sister, the most inconvenient thing possible happens: she falls in love.
Five months ago, Lucille Bennett’s father was institutionalized for attacking Lucille’s mother, who has subsequently abandoned her daughters. Survival is in Lucille’s hands: working to pay bills, taking care of her 10-year-old sister, Wren, and ensuring their secret stays secret. Now is not the time to fall in love, but fall she does, with Digby, her best friend’s twin brother, and although he has a girlfriend, Digby reciprocates Lucille’s feelings. After much careful dancing around each other and avoidance of their emotions, a tragedy brings them close. Lucille’s intuition and strength keep her afloat. Her first-person narration is lyrical, akin to that of a Francesca Lia Block character, but there’s an undercurrent of roughness in her voice. The book’s title references Dylan Thomas’ “Do Not Go Gentle Into that Good Night,” and Lucille takes the poem’s directive to heart. When she locates her missing father at a local halfway house, she gives him a good telling-off that will have readers cheering.
A heartbreakingly hopeful, lyrically told exploration of the abandoned children–selfish parents trope. (Fiction. 12-18)