Monday, June 18, 2012

One Moment

A couple of years ago, I was fortunate enough to meet author Kristina McBride at a Librarian's Luncheon at a local JVS.  She talked about her first book, The Tension of Opposites and about her inspiration for the book.  Her book sounded intriguing and the explanation of her process was so helpful, that I took notes and actually followed through on her advice.  I wrote about two chapters of that book I have always wanted to write before I lost focus yet again.  I haven't looked at it in about a year, but reading McBride's second book One Moment inspires me once again to work on that book.

When I met Kristina, it wasn't her presentation that intrigued me.  It was the discussion we had after the presentation.  My mother had just been diagnosed with dementia and I was somewhat overwhelmed that day.  I was talking to the host of the luncheon, an old friend, and Kristina became part of the dialogue.  I found her to be one of those people that I instantly click with, one who is easy to talk to, real in her approach and downright likeable.  We found each other on Facebook and have kept in touch over the last two years.  I have kept up with the writing of One Moment and have eagerly waited to read this book.  When it finally was available on Net Galley, I immediately downloaded it and read it in one day.  It is a great book, and one I think will establish Kristina as a well-known young adult writer. This is a book that teens will seek out for its subject and for its realistic take on adolescent emotions and concerns.  In other words, Kristina nailed it. 

The book is the story of a group of friends in a small town in Ohio (based on Yellow Springs) who face a great loss and must deal with the realities that arise as a result.  Beginning with action, One Moment never loses that initial pace.  Readers will not find rest until the final pages of the book when the resolution leads them just where they knew it should. There are no real twists in this book;  I could see what was coming all along.  However, Kristina's writing is strong enough to make me connect fully with the characters, especially Maggie.  Realistic dialogue and intuitive teenage actions combine to create a strong emotional tie for readers - even one who is 40 years old.  I imagine adolescents will identify even more with the feelings and thoughts of the characters as they encounter painful truths and realities that will shatter life as they knew it.  Overall, the books seems tautly composed and cleanly written.  It is Kristina's style that makes this book a winner, and I will highly recommend it to my friends and library patrons. 

As a reviewer, I have to conclude by saying this book is a necessity for YA libraries.  As a friend, I have to conclude by saying, "Bravo!"

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