We met up on our recent trip to Utah--she and her husband live in Colorado and had planned a vacation trip to Salt Lake City, so the timing was perfect. She is multi-talented but particularly of interest (and a touch of envy) for me is that she is a writer. She belongs to a writing group, and as a gift for me she brought along two books written by members of her writing group.
I was greatly in need of an enjoyable book to read, and selected first Red Glass, probably because it had a catchy cover.
Well, I have just finished the book, and it is a terrific read. It's been quite a while since I awarded a "terrific read" label to a book, but this one certainly merits it.
Curiously, the book is described on Amazon as being for younger readers--and it is very accessible, so I can understand that designation. But it appeals perfectly well to an older reader--such as me. The novel begins in Tucson with a blended family of a mother, originally from England, her husband who is step-father to her daughter. A distant great-aunt has come into their lives, and eventually her boyfriend and his son.
The plot revolves around a young boy who has been found in the desert with his parents who have died trying to cross from Mexico into the United States. The blended family take him in. After the boy, Pablo, has recovered, they decide to take him back to his village in Mexico. The trip includes an extension into Guatemala in quest of lost family connections.
Narrated by Sophie ( I find it significant that this name means "wisdom"), the young teen daughter of the English mother, the story is a coming of age story, and so much more. It raises very gently the question of illegal immigration. It throbs with the dreams and desires of people longing for a better life.
Many elements make this a terrific read--there is a very compelling and interesting plot; there are authentically drawn characters who speak in their own voices; there is an undercurrent of a significant issue being explored as the story unfolds.
I am already thinking of two places where I hope to recommend this marvelous book--for our church's youth group, and for one of my community college colleagues who teaches reading. Our church youth group recently completed a mission trip to El Paso, Texas, where they encountered first hand some of the consequences surrounding our country's complicated immigration policy.
And, for any reader out there looking for a very charming, terrific read--pick up Red Glass by Laura Resau.
Finally, thank you Leslie for the wonderful gift, and thank you Laura for your gift of writing.