From Publishers Weekly
As forthright as its title, this first novel deals directly with the reality of AIDS-effectively and affectingly. Lacy, a 13-year-old who is an avid swimmer, learns that Jack, her gay older brother, has AIDS and is moving back home. Urged by her parents to tell no one, she begins recording her thoughts and anxieties in a journal, entries from which are worked into Davis's trenchant story. Lacy's parents try to shield her from Jack's pain and his physical deterioration, encouraging her to keep up her "normal" life. In one of the novel's most poignant scenes, Lacy, expected to give a standard oral report on a health issue, courageously announces to her entire class that she is going to tell them what it is like to live with someone who has AIDS. Her move has unexpected consequences, and as Jack's condition worsens, Lacy spends less time with her swim team and more with her brother. These siblings-and the relationship between them-are unusually believable. The impact of the novel's sad but ultimately uplifting ending is emotional without being mawkish, and the reader is advised to have several hankies on hand. Ages 9-13.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From School Library Journal
Grade 5-9?Just when 13-year-old Lacy thinks that competitive swimming is what matters most to her, she learns that her older brother has AIDS and wants to come home. At first her parents' denial of his gayness transfers to his illness, and Lacy feels alone with her grief. While the family cares for him, a confusing array of emotions shakes her confidence. Yet she speaks out about AIDS at school and, when she says goodbye to her brother, she is able to verbalize all of the things she needs to say to him. Realistic portrayal of Jack's illness will provide readers with information about AIDS and an opportunity to empathize with those affected by it, but this novel loses its way at times. Tensions are resolved too easily and, except for Lacy herself, characterization is thin. A subplot in which she struggles to excel on the school swim team despite her turmoil is predictable but believable.?Claudia Morrow, Berkeley Public Library, CA
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.