The Kid Captivated Me
Before I even finished the book -- in fact, before I even received it -- I knew that it was one that I would pass on to my adult daughter to read. She was equally captivated and read it straight through.
The story is told from Precious's son Abdul's viewpoint and begins on the day of her funeral. It follows his life from foster care to a Catholic school for orphaned boys to adulthood.
I did find the book difficult to read at times -- it was hard at first to get used to being inside Abdul's head and experiencing his thoughts and his life as he did.
Even more difficult was the raw, graphic subject matter. Abdul lives a life none of us would want for our children and it was painful to witness this.
We see and hear heartbreaking news all the time about children who are abused, both physically and sexually. Sapphire takes those stories out of the headlines and makes them vividly real.
Even more astounding to me was the way that she cast a different light on the people who molest children. Although I can never feel sympathy for them, this book gave me some insight on why they do what they do.
I found myself reacting with anger to certain parts of the book and with sadness to others. The best parts were when Abdul began to discover who he was and what gave him joy. It was so exciting and inspirational to see him discover his talents and learn to express them.
The last section of the book was, for me, very confusing and somewhat surprising. I guess I was expecting a happy ending rather than reality and it took me a while to figure out what was happening. Now that I look back, that seems to be exactly what the author intended.
With The Kid, Sapphire has written yet another powerful book. I would recommend The Kid to any adult who is willing to sacrifice a small degree of comfort in order to experience a world that many of us know nothing about.