The Kid: Uncomfortable Enough You'll Want To Look Away

BlogHer Review

A raw sequel to the critically acclaimed book, Push, the story of Precious' son, Jamar "Abdul" Jones is one that will truly rip out a little piece of your heart and leave you wondering at the very end ... what's next? 

The story starts when Abdul (or Jamal, or J.J. as he is called) is nine-years old at his mother's funeral. After losing her battle with AIDS, Abdul is left orphaned without family able or well enough to care for him and is placed in a Catholic Boys' Home. Over the course of the years, Abdul experiences life as both the abused and the abuser and battles with the difference between reality and what he wants as his reality. 

Even at a young age he is brilliant and smart and given an opportunity to excel time and time again, both in school and in dance. Abdul must face these challenges of sexual abuse, his own abuse against others, and overcoming the baggage he carries that his family handed him when his mother died. 

You'll want him to rise above his circumstances. Perhaps that is what kept me going page by awful page. One sick situation after another that this boy faces, trying to get to his dreams. Being eaten alive by the reality of the streets of New York. The weight of this cruel world slowly driving his bright mind to a breaking point

As you read along through the treacherous thoughts and dreams, this book makes you feel the pain of a young child battling how to handle his own sexual abuse, and will make you angry at some of the results. Page by page you wonder where his mind is going, and inevitably, the words from this brilliant author will pull you into these dreams and drag you down a very dark road of poverty, abuse, sexual desires and hate.

There were a lot of emotions I experienced reading this book. Wonder, sadness, and anger and with each page I had more questions. Pieces of the book uncomfortable enough to make me want to look away. And the thoughts from the mind of Abdul, trying to read the words as fast as his mind was probably racing. It took some time to get used to the dialect of a nine-year old boy living in New York, and meeting the great-grandmother was another adjustment to learn to read. I wanted to hate it, and there were parts where I did. But I traveled the journey with him, and when I closed the book, I found I wanted more. I could see the book being played out like a movie with each thought and detailed description, right down to the grease on the walls and shoes on his feet.

This book will keep you both wanting to stop reading and wanting more with each new life event that Abdul faces. And how he chooses to overcome or fall victim to his circumstances.

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