THIS RAGING LIGHT by Estelle Laure
Pub Date: Dec. 22, 2015 | HMH Books, 288 pages | Amazon~IndieBound
Can the best thing happen at the worst time?
Her dad went crazy. Her mom left town. She has bills to pay and a little sister to look after. Now is not the time for level-headed seventeen-year-old Lucille to fall in love. But love—messy, inconvenient love—is what she’s about to experience when she falls for Digby Jones, her best friend’s brother. With blazing longing that builds to a fever pitch, Estelle Laure’s soulful debut will keep readers hooked and hoping until the very last page.
The very first thing that grabbed me about the book This Raging Light was the beauty of the writing. It is simple and poetic, and it sparked my interest from the start. Think of it as stream of consciousness for the YA set – writing as someone is thinking is tricky at best, but Laure crafted a voice that demanded to be read and read quickly. Brilliantly done.
Lucille has been handed a tough situation with two absent parents and a little sister who needs her to be both her parents and her friend. The story goes so much beyond this basic plot line, so much more deeply into what motivates us as people, the worries many teenagers feel at Lucille’s age plus the weight of her responsibilities and choices that her life as put in her path, and the ache and joy of love. The story is about love, the strength we find in tough situations and how we find ways to survive in the harshest of circumstances.
Reading the words that make up Lucille’s is thoughts pulls you into her world and you will find it impossible to leave until you turn the very last page. Yes, the book is full of weighty topics, but I think that is part of the appeal. This is not the typical YA coming-of-age story. Lucille’s life is wrapped in complicated threads and depending on which one she unravels; she changes the trajectory of her life and of her sisters.