professornana (professornana) wrote,

  • Mood:

On the trip to and from San Angelo (about 15 hours all told) we all listened to the forthcoming book (August, 2008, Margaret McElderry) IDENTICAL by Ellen Hopkins. That means the 66 year old, me (55) and the 17 and 15 year old. Nice audience range, right? This is the story of twins Raeanne and Kayleigh. An auto accident, occurring years before the story opens, has fractured the family. Dad still manages to conduct his business as a judge despite his addiction to alcohol and pain killers. Mom is running for Congress. Raeanne has delved into the addictions preferred by her father and Kayleigh is being sexually abused by dear old dad. Pretty gruesome scenario, I will admit. However, from the first opening words the entire Lesesne clan sat riveted to the story. When we would stop for fuel or lunch or other necessities, we would all hazard guesses as to what was ahead. We argued about the twins and talked about how their father came to be an abuser himself.

By the final two disks we were almost wanting to fast forward: to see if there would be redemption. (There is)

What is remarkable is what happened on this drive. I popped it into the CD player as we drove
away from the house for our 7 hour drive. Hubby's comment in the car:"she is a good narrator." Kids' reaction was absolute rapt silence. We got to the hotel and hubby asked if I thought the content might be too much. I assured him the girls had read the other Hopkins' books. That evening at dinner we talked about the audio (we were halfway through) and made some predictions about it. The kids said the only thing they did not like was listening to it in the car with their GRANDPARENTS (emphasis theirs). We had some interesting talk. about addiction, incest, sexual abuse and the like. The drive home was also silent and engaged listening. After the last words faded, we talked about our impressions and reactions. Who would have thought, right?

Edited to add my update on the FMADWC (15 minutes a day writing challenge):

time spent on writing: 45 minutes
words unraveling on the page: about 800
progress made: priceless
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