Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The tragedy of loss and learning to move on

Growing apart is probably one of the hardest parts to growing up. But having your best friend die when you’re both only 13 is one of those great tragedies most of us luckily don’t have to face. In Dear Anjali, by Melissa Glenn Haber, Meredith cannot believe that her best friend Anjali could possibly be dead, so she decides to write her letters every day. Through these letters we get glimpses of depression, anger, and confusion. The letters are written on a typewriter, and also by hand, so there are different fonts in the book to give it a realistic journal-like feel. As Meredith struggles through the months after her friend’s death, she starts talking to and hanging out with the boy she’s had a crush on for years. Through this new friendship it is revealed that Anjali was keeping secrets from Meredith. The secrets aren’t nearly as dramatic as I hoped as a reader, but they were realistic and nonetheless shattering for Meredith. Yet, through these realizations, Meredith is finally able to move on with her life. Dear Anjali was a touching read, and was helped along by its unique format—who doesn’t like a book written entirely in letters. For all you scholars out there, when a book is written in this way, it’s called an epistle style novel. If you want a dramatic story about friendship and moving on, I would give Dear Anjali a try.

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