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Something Like Hope Hardcover – December 28, 2010
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It's the voice of Shavonne which resonates. Angry and confused by what has happened to her, Shavonne lashes out in violence against those who come close to her secrets. As her 18th birthday approaches with imminent release into a harsh world, she begins to open up to a sad-eyed middle-aged white male counselor. He lets her come to terms with giving birth to a baby delivered straight into the system and her own crack-head mother who deserted her. He lets her see it isn't her fault; but what comes next for her will be of her own choosing. He lets her discover these things herself.
The connections between her low self-esteem and self-destructive path lead her to the weight of guilt from the secret she keeps. The guilt she has carried for the role she played in her brother's childhood accident builds like emotional thunderclouds. Letting go of the blame and shame for not being a mother to her brother, or a mother to her own infant, is only possible when she begins to recognize she has been a motherless child. Only now is she becoming an adult and will be responsible for her own self from now on and Shavonne discovers something like hope.
Shavonne's exterior tough attitude reminded me of some of the students I've had. She's suffered from all types of abuse from when she was living with her mom, living in foster care and living in the detention center. It's no wonder that Shavonne has built up this wall to protect herself; she's constantly preparing herself for fight or flight. The abuse she suffers at the juvenile detention facility is the most haunting of all. Any time something happened to her or to another character, I wanted to bust through those doors and have someone arrested! Thankfully Shavonne finds some solace in Mr. Delpopolo. He's straight-forward and honest with her, which both throws Shavonne for a loop, but is also something she desperately needs. Mr. Delpopolo shows Shavonne compassion, which so many teens-troubled or not-crave. The therapy Shavonne receives from talking to Mr. Delpopolo allows her to feel. She feels more than just pain and fear. She starts feeling sympathy and love and concern for her new roommate Mary.Read more ›
The book highlights how one young person can absorb so much of the world around her and get to a point where she feels as though she would have been better off not even born. Through bad choices and the odds against her, Shavonne is forced to look outside of what she sees and get the point where she realizes that she deserves more and can actually have more than she ever believed possible.
SOMETHING LIKE HOPE is a book that young and old can read and appreciate as well as learn from and hopefully discuss. We have to do more to show our young people that regardless where they come from or even whatever mistakes they have made, they can better themselves if they want to. They just have to know that we really believe it.
I could not put this book down, and the ending brought me to tears. It was so powerful, I had to go back and re-read the last few chapters. And I cried a second time. So many scenes--like Shavonne's desperate telephone call to her daughter's foster mom, and her unexpected encounter with a kindly woman on the Greyhound bus--are hauntingly touching and superbly rendered. Goodman's gritty-yet-poignant tale offers a glimmer of hope that genuine care and concern still exist in the harshest corners of this world, while underscoring their immutable power to repair even the worst emotional and psychological wreckage from a childhood beset with unthinkable ruthlessness, indifference and despair.
Although Something Like Hope is a quick, young-adult read, it is one of those rare books I would characterize as "required reading" for all adults--young and old alike.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very good book! They cussed like a drunken sailor , but still very good.Published 2 months ago by JohnAustin
This is a very great book I've actually cried and I really felt Shavonne's emotions and feelings
5 Stars !!!!!
If realistic fiction that highlights the rampant never-ending cycle of societal problems appeals to you, this book is something you want to read. Read morePublished on June 19, 2013 by j.p. levi, author
This was an okay novel .... I just wish it could have shared more of her background as well as the outcomePublished on May 15, 2013 by tonya griffin
This is a good book for girls who don't like to read. Strong language, but this is reality. Good job of describing a troubled teenage girl in residential treatment.Published on May 3, 2013 by N2LITRC
What is it like when you lose hope? What is it like when you see life from only one viewpoint? These are some of the questions that our youth are being faced with today. Read morePublished on April 27, 2012 by Amazon Customer