RIGHT BEHIND YOU by Gail Giles

RIGHT BEHIND YOU

Age Range: 14 & up

KIRKUS REVIEW

When Kip was nine, he set Bobby Clarke on fire and then spent the next four years in a mental ward for dangerous juveniles. Guilty of the worst crime on his ward, Kip is the most civilized and intelligent child there, and at 13, he is freed. In a new place with a new name, Kip can start afresh, but he’ll never succeed in a normal life if he doesn’t learn to manage the crushing guilt of his past. Neither Kip nor any of his psychiatrists tackle the unanswerable question of whether a nine-year-old can be held responsible for cold-blooded murder. Instead, they focus on moving forward, on living a worthwhile life despite an unforgivable past. Guided by Chris Crutcher–style helpful adults, Kip’s journey gains context from the adolescent traumas of the teenagers he meets. This powerful and moving novel of self-discovery gives no easy answers, except inasmuch as it’s too easy to have Kip be an entirely sweet, well-intentioned young man, unscarred by anything but guilt after four years of incarceration. Thought-provoking and heart-wrenching. (Fiction. YA)

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-316-16636-2
Page count: 304pp
Publisher: Little, Brown
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2007




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