Disappear Home by Laura Hurwitz is a beautiful take at the hard life of two young girls in the early 70s. Rating: 5/5
*This is book #4/35 for my 2015 book challenge. This was also book #4/6 for the ‘New, New, and New!’ group challenge. You can take a look at the reading challenge here.
This book has a publication date of March 1, 2015
This review is based on an early copy of this book. Some details could change from now.
In 1970, as the hippie movement is losing its innocence, Shoshanna and her six-year-old sister, Mara, escape from Sweet Earth Farm, a declining commune, run by their tyrannical and abusive father, Adam. Their mother, Ella, takes them to San Francisco, where they meet one of her old friends, Judy, and the four of them decide to head off and try to make a life together. Finding a safe haven at the farm of kind, elderly Avery Elliot, the four of them find some measure of peace and stability. Then their mother’s crippling depression returns. Confused and paranoid, Ella is convinced that she and the girls must leave before Adam finds them and extracts revenge. The girls don’t wish to leave the only stable home they’ve ever had. But as Ella grows worse and worse, events conspire to leave them to face a choice they never could have imagined. Shoshanna has always watched over her sister and once again she has to watch over her ailing mother. Will she ever live a “normal” life?
Trigger Warning: Book includes child/domestic abuse and drug use
This was way different from the books I usually choose to read. I’m not typically interested in books set in earlier decades, but I was really intrigued by the description. I set myself up to be disappointed – it’s not rare for the descriptions of books to be exaggerated to seem better than it really is. I was pleasantly surprised to find this book to be as good as it seemed, if not better. This is a young adult book that involves a teenage girl who is not obsessed with boys and dating. A story that revolves around the characters surviving through awful events and coming out on the other side. These things don’t occur in YA books as much as they should. Even the brilliant dystopian novels that have come out throughout the past few years rely too much on romance. This was a breath of fresh air, and I’m so glad I read it. The book was inspiring and emotional. I cared deeply for all of the characters, and felt actual disgust and fear in regards to their abusive father/husband Adam Ebersole. There were a few things that I wished went a bit deeper (like the police keeping an eye on Judy’s friends after finding the stolen car near their shop and the stolen silverware made into bracelets) but for the most part I was impressed with how well the story flowed. Time passed appropriately, I felt, and the conflicts were seen through fully. When I had to put the book down to go to work or do other things I was itching to get back to it. It was that good.
If you’re interested in reading my GoodReads updates from this book you can do so here. I must say, they’re quite entertaining. It will tell you exactly what I was thinking on certain pages.
PLEASE NOTE: I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions held within this review are my own thoughts and feelings and do not reflect upon anyone else.