Despite the fact that she is homeless and her mother seems to be shrinking into herself daily, Amber Appleton is an eternal optimist. She loves her dog, Bobby Big Boy, and the group of misfits she leads at school, dubbed Franks Freak Force Federation. Other than the four other members of the group, she has a wide social circle. She teaches English to a group of Korean women at a local church, visits the local nursing home weekly to cheer up the residents, and spends time writing haiku for a local veteran of the Vietnam war.
There is bleakness and inhumanity all around her, but Amber sees it all with a tint of rosiness, sure that she can rise above her situation to be like her role model, Donna, who is a lawyer. But when tragedy strikes, Amber finds herself questioning everything she believes and wondering if her view on life is all wrong. When disaster threatens again, she has to decide what’s really important to her.
Sorta Like a Rock Star by Matthew Quick is funny and sad and hopeful and uplifting and so much more. Amber shows that you don’t necessarily have to be defined by your circumstances, and that individuals can make a difference—for good or bad—in others’ lives. Mother-daughter book clubs with girls aged 15 and up will be able to talk about several important issues, such as homelessness, alcohol addiction, the effects of autism, building community, and more. And Amber may just inspire you along the way to put your own efforts behind a cause or person who needs it. I highly recommend it.
The publisher provided me with a copy of this book for review.