cover image Hannah in Between

Hannah in Between

Colby F. Rodowsky. Farrar Straus Giroux, $15 (151pp) ISBN 978-0-374-32837-5

Once again Rodowsky ( Julie's Daughter ) is right on target in her expression of the perspective and concerns of a young adolescent in crisis. Twelve-year-old Hannah's childhood comes to a quick halt when she realizes that her mother's drinking is getting out of control. Since no one else in the family is willing to admit there is a problem, Hannah carries the terrible secret alone, doing her best to rid the house of empty vodka bottles and hide her mother's erratic behavior from friends. When her mother's drunk driving leads to a serious automobile accident, Hannah's father is finally forced to admit his wife is an alcoholic, but he cannot produce a solution or promise a brighter future. This heartrending novel offers a frank, sensitive depictions of alcoholism and its effects. Far from seeming a monster, Hannah's mother emerges as a caring woman suffering many disappointments. Her painful struggle to regain sobriety proves to be as moving as her daughter's attempts to create order out of chaos. Through the author's keenly perceptive, down-to-earth narrative, readers will sense the strong bond of love that connects the members of Hannah's family and ultimately helps deep wounds to heal. Ages 12-up. (May)