Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine

If I had to choose my favorite heartbreaking book, it would be Mockingbird, by Kathryn Erskine. I bought this book from a friend who was selling most of her closet and bookshelf. Typically, this isn’t the genre I read, but it was worth way more than a morning spent laying on my bed and sobbing over dead Devon (you’ll figure out later…) 😆

Mockingbird is a stand-alone novel that won the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature in 2010. It is retailed at around $5.99. (Barnes and Noble and Amazon both sell this book, as well as many other bookstores.)

Synopsis   Kathryn Erskine

In Caitlin’s world, everything is black or white. Things are good or bad. Anything in between is confusing. That’s the stuff Caitlin’s older brother, Devon, has always explained. But now Devon’s dead and Dad is no help at all. Caitlin wants to get over it, but as an eleven-year-old girl with Asperger’s, she doesn’t know how. When she reads the definition of closure, she realizes that is what she needs. In her search for it, Caitlin discovers that not everything is black or white; the world is full of  colors; messy and beautiful. 


★★★★ 4.7 stars

Mockingbird, by Kathryn Erskine, is the story of Caitlin Ann Smith, an artistic & intelligent eleven-year-old, but also a girl diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome. (Mayo Clinic  explains this condition further.)

This is a deeply poignant story that made me cry my heart out. Caitlin’s world is filled with sadness, but the kind of sadness that gave her hope to achieve “closure” and help her community to do the same. When I was reading about Caitlin and her character, I had to remind myself she was in the fifth grade, and not a four-year-old who had an expansive vocabulary. But it fits perfectly with the plot, and gives the perspective of an ASD-diagnosed person. It hurt to see that she couldn’t quite grasp the meaning of empathy and that she couldn’t understand any figurativeness.

Please read this novel if you absolutely love realistic fiction,  you want “a strong and complex character study”*, or you want to well up in tears and cry until you feel better!

Enjoy reading! ~M


*(The Horn Book).


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