How to Make Friends with the Dark
Author: Kathleen Glasgow
Published: April 9, 2019
Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 5 stars
Here is what happens when your mother dies.
It’s the brightest day of summer and it’s dark outside. It’s dark in your house, dark in your room, and dark in your heart. You feel like the darkness is going to split you apart.
That’s how it feels for Tiger. It’s always been Tiger and her mother against the world. Then, on a day like any other, Tiger’s mother dies. And now it’s Tiger, alone.
Here is how you learn to make friends with the dark.
Another ugly cry book for Kim! The cover fascinated me, the title sounded interesting, and after reading the description, I became obsessed with wanting to read it. It started out pretty regularly, a teen who doesn’t get along with her mom, who just wants independence, etc. Thankfully, there’s not much to give away that you don’t already learn in the description. Tiger’s mom dies unexpectedly and the rest of the book is Tiger trying to deal with her grief and new life without her mother. There were times when the typical teen idea of “adults just don’t understand” came out and that got a little annoying, but the emotions were so raw and real that it didn’t bother me. There are a lot of good lessons throughout the story that I think teens would benefit from, but I would not recommend this book to younger kids. By the time I finished it, I was sobbing. I haven’t cried that hard since Jagged Mind! It didn’t help that I’m PMS’ing but that’s neither here nor there!
I liked how Glasgow documented the whole journey from death, to funeral, to foster care, to guardianship, to coroners report, to obituary, to dealing with permanent loss. I think this would be a great book to give to teachers to read. To be honest, while reading this, that opening quote from The Breakfast Club kept coming to mind. “…and these children that you spit on as they try to change their worlds are immune to your consultations. They’re quite aware of what they’re going through…” – David Bowie.
Fortunately, there isn’t any real adult vs. teen conflict in the story, but it is sometimes easy to forget that teens’ feelings can be complicated and hard to deal with. We think that they have the resilience of childhood, but they’re far closer to adulthood and they often need more attention than the younger ones. Overall, this is an emotional and educational read that gives a detailed look into everything surrounding death, specifically how it affects teens under 18. I absolutely recommend it!