CAN'T HEAR YOU LISTENING by Hadley Irwin

CAN'T HEAR YOU LISTENING

Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

Superbright Stanley has always been both an achiever and dependable in other ways, like helping Tracy's dad collect scientific data on a nearby prairie. So, when Stanley is suddenly hooked on alcohol and pot, it takes his friends a while to catch on. Meanwhile, narrator Tracy has her own problems: she and her mom, a best-selling author of self. help books, don't seem to get along anymore--especially since Dad moved out. Finally, Stanley's repeated need for rescuing makes Tracy realize that abetting his coverups isn't in his best interest; and, by confiding in her mother (who wisely helps Tracy make her own responsible decision), Tracy not only finds a way to help Stanley but reopens constructive, affectionate communication with her mother. "Hadley Irwin," a writing duo responsible for other YA novels (e.g., Abby, My Love, 1985), writes smoothly and presents an authentic picture of the self-delusion that deters recognition of a drug problem by an addict or his intimates. But the accompanying naivetÇ here is less believable; and the novel would be stronger if Stanley were shown with more depth: since his pre-drug character isn't demonstrated, the contrast loses impact. Still, an honest look at a conflict between various loyalties that is faced by many teens.

Pub Date: Oct. 30th, 1990
ISBN: 689-50513-2
Page count: 202pp
Publisher: McElderry
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15th, 2000




MORE BY HADLEY IRWIN