My Life as a Body

Norma Klein, Author Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers $12.95 (247p) ISBN 978-0-394-89051-7
Intelligent, shy Augie, a senior in high school, is fairly certain that romance will never play a part in her life. When she reluctantly agrees to tutor Sam, the new boy at school, she never dreams that they will fall in love. Sam is confined to a wheelchair and may be permanently brain damaged as the result of a car accident. As they work together, Augie and Sam establish a tentative friendship; after Sam's brain functions return to normal, he and Augie become sexually involved. Their relationship continues through the rest of their senior year, and then falls apart during their first year away from one another at college. Fortunately, Sam's disability is never the sole focus of this novel: if anything, greater emphasis is placed on Augie's growing acceptance of her own sexuality. Klein has avoided the pitfalls of didactic problem novels and instead has sensitively depicted the coming of age of two unusual characters. A literate, very readable and sexually explicit account of the complex social lives of privileged New York City teenagers. Ages 12-up. (October)
Reviewed on: 09/01/1987
Release date: 09/01/1987
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