Review: Saving Red by Sonya Sones

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Rating: 3 Stars

Sonya Sones, award-winning author of What My Mother Doesn’t Know, delivers a gripping, funny, and inspiring novel in verse about what happens when the person you set out to save ends up saving you.
Right before winter break, fourteen-year-old Molly Rosenberg reluctantly volunteers to participate in Santa Monica’s annual homeless count, just to get her school’s community service requirement out of the way. But when she ends up meeting Red, a spirited homeless girl only a few years older than she is, Molly makes it her mission to reunite her with her family in time for Christmas. This turns out to be extremely difficult—because Red refuses to talk about her past. There are things Molly won’t talk about either. Like the awful thing that happened last winter. She may never be ready to talk about that. Not to Red, or to Cristo, the soulful boy she meets while riding the Ferris wheel one afternoon.
When Molly realizes that the friends who Red keeps mentioning are nothing more than voices inside Red’s head, she becomes even more concerned about her well-being. How will Molly keep her safe until she can figure out a way to get Red home? In Sonya Sones’s latest novel, two girls, with much more in common than they realize, give each other a new perspective on the meaning of family, friendship, and forgiveness.

I'm just going to jump into what I liked and didn't like with this one. Eventually my book club and I will discuss this via Google Hangouts and when we post it on Youtube, I'll share the link. However, full disclaimer, I do not have anxiety or any type of mental illness, so my perspective may be different from some who can relate on a more personal level.

  • Molly was a very typical teenager girl, more so than many others. She wasn't some raving beauty who felt unattractive, she wasn't super quirky on the outside and hiding her feelings on the inside. She was about as average and you can get, and it was lovely.
  • I liked Cristo (although that's a weird name), I don't know why. Maybe because he was kind of awkward like Molly. They texts they exchanged were cute, the mini adventures they went on were cute, and it was all very PG and not over dramatic (although don't get me wrong, I love that too).
  • The authors notes
  • I don't feel qualified to say too much about Red, however, I can say I loved how things ended for her. I think it was very realistic and well done.
Didn't Like:
  • Mom smokes pot. It seemed very unnecessary also unexplored for something so unusual. Where was she getting the pot? Did she have other pot head friends? Why pot? Why not prescription drug for depressions? 
  • I HATE when the author so obviously dangles a secret in our faces, but then states that they're not going to tell us what it is. It was obvious that Molly has issues that we would learn more about as the story progressed, you didn't need to verbally explain that to us. It actually made me put the book down for like two days.
In Conclusion:
While it wasn't my favorite book, I liked the book. It was a very quick read, and I enjoy books written in verse. I'd be happy to suggest this book to interested teens.

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