I read this and immediately created a last will and testament online, just in case. This book really hit home, in terms of personally having lost a parent in a violent manner at a young age, but also because I have kids myself and couldn’t bear the thought of them being shuffled around because I didn’t have a proper will in place.
And now I’m going to write a letter to my kids telling them how to live and grow without me, and hide it away. Because just in case is a real reason.
I’m not going to lie, I read most of this book with tears in my eyes and sometimes outright bawling my eyes out. It’s a raw book, and not an easy read, but it’s a really important read. When I lost my father just before I turned 10 I didn’t know how to explain what I was feeling. I avoided talking about him, about suicide, and it took me years to be able to stop feeling bad about saying the S word. Feeling bad because it made other people feel bad for asking the question “how did he die?”.
Tiger Tolliver loses her mother suddenly and has to learn to live without her. It was always only her and her mother, and now she has to learn to navigate foster care, grief, life in general, alone, at the age of 16. Not going to add any spoilers so I will stop there. But I have to add that life can really suck, people can be really awful and not who you thought they were, but at the same time others can turn out to be more awesome than you ever thought and there are moments where the sun shines through.
This is the kind of book I wish I had been able to read when I was 11, 12, 13. It would have helped me a lot. Heck, I’m 41 and it’s helped me now even. Be kind people: you never know who is having to deal with the worst kind of grief while still having to function as a human being day in day out.