TGON Reads: Broken by Daniel Clay

“I really can’t stress enough that I would never have sat down to write “Broken” had I not read To Kill a Mockingbird or a newspaper article about how it had come to be written.”  -Daniel Clay

 

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Daniel Clay does wonderfully at re-telling of Harper lee’s Classic “To Kill a Mockingbird”. Set in England, it follows the story of eleven- year-old, Skunk Cunningham, whom we discover is in a coma in the first few pages of the book. Her father, Archie Cunningham (much like the beloved Atticus Finch) is raising Skunk and her brother, Jed, alone.   Across the way, they find trouble with the Oswald clan. Five sisters; Saskia, Susan, Sunset, Sunrise and Saraya, live with their father, Bob, who has no control over them. A vicious rumor is soon spread about another neighbor, Ricky Buckley (becoming the novel’s Boo Radley) sexually assaulting Saskia while riding in his car, his life is never the same. Humiliation and fear leads to his reclusion and desire for isolation, with his father describing him as being,”broken.” Violence unfolds between the three families as we grow further to learn of Skunk’s Coma. As much violence as there is in the novel, there’s also a silver lining of love and hope, as Skunk watches her father find love, while her adored teacher loses it and she, herself struggles with her love for Dillon, a pale-pink-hoody wearing, gypsy whose dream it is to live in Ireland. Her brother, Jed experiences losing his adolescence and gaining his manhood, even if it is from one of the Oswald sisters…This Novel is full of Comedy, tragedy, hope, desires, and love. I recommend it to any one who is a fan of Mockingbird.

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