Monday, September 28, 2015

Can't Look Away by Donna Cooner

This book is one that I have had on my shelf for a while- I ordered it with a Scholastics Book Club order in the spring and never got around to reading it until this weekend.  I didn't realize until I finished the book that it was written by the same author as Skinny- which I quite liked too.

Can't Look Away is the story of Torrey, a 16 year old blogger who found fame on the Internet sharing her beauty tips.  What the public sees of Torrey is one side, but in her private life she is dealing with the death of her younger sister just a few months ago.  She feels a great deal of guilt and doesn't know how to cope with the changes in her family.  When her family packs her up and moves her across the country, Torrey hopes she can remain anonymous because strangers online are saying very cruel things about her.  As Torrey gets to know a local boy whose family owns the local funeral home, she starts learning more about death and the Mexican tradition of el Dia de los Muertos or The Day of the Dead.  Torrey starts to explore her own feelings about death and how she can mourn the death of her sister.

I couldn't stop reading this book.  It was sad and hard to read at points, but I could see so many of my students in Torrey.  Even just dealing with the whole idea of being famous on the internet and the different ways people respond to complete strangers in the comment section makes this book an important one to read. Watching how Torrey and her family deal with the loss of her sister also makes this book quite compelling.  I really enjoyed it.  

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