Author: Swati Avasthi
Genre: Teen Fiction, Realistic Fiction
Publication Date: March 9, 2010
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
ISBN-13 Book: 9780375863400
Source: I received a copy for review from the publisher for my book award committee. This is my honest review!
Split by Swati Avasthi
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
When sixteen year-old Jace arrives on the doorstep of his estranged brother he doesn’t know what kind of reception to expect. For years he has stepped between his father and the abuse that he dishes out to his mother, and now his father has kicked him out of the house. With no place else to go, Jace turns to his brother who left home years ago, without any word to the family. Jace tries to move on from his past and his father, but sometimes the past follows you no matter where you may go.
I think the most remarkable thing about this novel is that it doesn’t pull any punches—pardon the pun. There is no easy way out, no quick fix, no ready-made solution. In this novel the character’s emotions feel raw and real. This is not a book that slaps a band-aid on the problem and everyone lives happily ever after. In that respect this novel was outstanding.
The characters in this novel feel real. Their emotions and actions are realistic and sometimes very raw. Both brothers, Jace and Christian have a lot of baggage they carry around after years of living in an abusive household, and the two of them deal with it in different ways.
The pacing of this book could be a bit frustrating at times. I wanted the book to go more quickly than it did. While the story does a good job of propelling you through the novel, there are times when it was just too easy for me to put down. Thankfully the audio got me through those parts.
The audio book is produced by listening library and read by Joshua Swanson. I have listened to Swanson perform before and liked his narration. Last year I listened to The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan. During that performance I felt like he did a remarkable job with the narration, but while narrating Split the narration felt stilted in places. Since I don’t remember the narration in The Lost Hero being that way, I have to wonder if that is because of the way the book is written. It wasn’t a major problem, but it was a bit distracting at times.
Overall this is a realist and raw portrayal of two young men dealing with the consequences of domestic abuse. Well written.
View all my reviews