Someone Else's Life (Hardback)
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Short Description for Someone Else's Life When seventeen-year-old Rosie's mother dies from Huntington's Disease, a devastating secret is revealed that sends Rosie on a journey from England to the United States with her ex-boyfriend, where she discovers yet more deeply-buried and troubling secrets and lies.
- Published: 14 February 2012
- Format: Hardback 464 pages
- ISBN 13: 9780385740654 ISBN 10: 0385740654
- Sales rank: 171,351
Reviews for Someone Else's Life
Someone Else's Life, by Katie Dale
Also reviewed on my blog, The Vintage Bookworm. (www.vintagebookworm.blogspot.com)
When I first added this book to my reading list for the Debut Author Challenge, I thought it sounded really good. I got excited when I saw it in the Random Buzzer's store, but when it got here I just let it sit. I really wanted to read it, but was worried about the tough subject. Not that I've ever known anyone with Huntington's, but I was still worried.
Yes, it was a bit hard at times, but it's a wonderful book. Katie Dale really did her research and you learn a lot about Huntington's while reading it. You also really get into the emotions of what it's like to love someone with the disease and all the effects it has on everyone.
Not only does she have the subject of Huntingtons, but she throws in what it would be like to be switched at birth! To have your mother, the woman you thought gave birth to you, die from Huntington's Disease, and then find out that you weren't really her daughter at all. If that happened to me, I would break down severely and sit in a dark closet for a very long time. But that's not what Rosie did!
Even though she loved the woman who she thought was her mother, the one who raised her, she wanted to know who her real parents were so she went searching! She hit a lot of obstacles along the way, but she was never completely selfish. Even when sometimes she had a right to be really upset and selfish, she tried her best to make the most of it.
Rosie was a really great character. It took me a while to get into the book and to get into Rosie's character, but as the story progressed I really started liking her character.Holly, on the other hand, completely annoyed me. At times, I really felt for her, but other times I just wanted to slap her. (Not going to tell you who she is!)
I really liked all the other characters. Especially Andy. I felt so bad for him a lot of the time, but he was a strong character. He was Rosie's rock.
Overall, this was a beautiful novel. It is also pretty uniquely written! Part One is told in chapters in Rosie's point-of-view. Part Two isn't cut up into chapters, but into point-of-views of Rosie and Holly.
If you've had someone close to you suffer from Huntington's Disease, or any disease at all, I highly recommend this book. Even if you haven't known any suffer from any disease, it's still a great book. Tough subject, but someone has to write them, right?! And Katie Dale chose to be the one with courage and to write this beautiful book. I'm very impressed and will definitely be keeping an eye out on Katie's work! by Amanda
- Top review
Review from Esther's Ever After
Someone Else's Life tackles some heavy issues head on, and Katie Dale isn't afraid to open up these discussions and question them. Abortion, adoption, teenage pregnancy, life-threatening disease, dysfunctional families, and law- all have their own part to play in this story and come together to form a bizarre turn of events.
Yet this combination of themes in one book means that it relies heavily upon shock and awe, and a number of twists throughout the story that further complicate matters and convolute the story rather which ultimately takes away from what could have been an exceptional novel.
Reasons to Read:
I'm like the majority of people and I really don't know much about Huntington's Disease. Neither did Rosie, until her mom was diagnosed with it later on in life. Now, Rosie's life seems to revolve around Huntington's Disease, until she finds out an even bigger shock when she decides to get tested for this hereditary disease. But Katie Dale deserves huge kudos for dealing with and featuring a disease that very few people are aware of and this provides a great avenue for readers to learn about something new and unfamiliar.
2.Rosie's growth and maturity over the course of the book:
Confession: when I started reading Someone Else's Life I was seriously unimpressed with Rosie and how she chose to handle her grief. I was afraid I would have an extremely difficult time connecting with her, but she truly does grow up (by leaps and bounds) as the book goes on. By the end, I was inspired by Rosie and the hard decisions she had to make but how often she thought of those around her, yet kept her own needs and desires in mind. She isn't completely selfless (so few people are), but she is thoughtful and considerate.
My main problem with the book began with the introduction of another character, Molly. There was too much focus on Molly, a character that I simply could not stand and I couldn't bring myself to care for her because she was just so frustratingly immature and bratty. Yes, I know Molly had her own difficulties to overcome. But the difference in attitude and actions between Molly and Rosie is striking, and really makes it easier to dislike Molly when one compares her to Rosie who is just so much easier to like. Similarily, I found many of the characters to be a bit back and forth in their attitudes, especially Rosie's ex-boyfriend. Nobody seemed to be able to make a decision they could stick with and so the story just dragged on.
And while I did enjoy the number of twists in this book, after a while it just got to be too much. It seemed as if every possible bad thing that could happen had to happen, and that characters had to react in the worst possible way just to amp up the drama. It wasn't necessary and it didn't feel realistic; it was far too implausible and while I can handle some improbability this just got to be too much. I think that was the ultimate reason why I didn't enjoy Someone Else's Life as much as I wanted to: I had a hard time buying into the story and its characters, so consequently it just fell flat for me.
Review copy received from Random House Canada/e-galley from Net Galley. by Brenna Staats
Ms. Dale sure knows how to write. The beginning (and really all throughout the book) she conveys such heart wrenching emotions through her characters, she also does well at the highs, and capturing the true essence of teenage emotions, from one extreme to the other then back again in a new york minute. The emotions really came alive to me with her vivid descriptions.
The jumps in narration was a little confusing for me at first, and then I totally got it, and it was a masterpiece! I love the generational struggles and how they transcend time, she did a really good job with that.
I also had a hard time getting a grasp on Rosie at first, one minute strong and standing up for herself and then the next doing things that seem extreme like being all over a random guy, but I guess that grief, especially raw and fresh grief will do that to you. All in all, I think that her character ressonated with me more than Holly's because she came across as selfish. I tried to remind myself all she faced and the fact that she is just a teenager, but I never really could bring myself to like her much until the end.
This was a hard book to read in that I have no clue what I would do if I were in Rosie or Holly's shoes (or even Kitty at first for that matter.) With the Huntington's hold and the cycle of choices and possibilities, and then the whole family situation to deal with--on top of Holly's other secret, I just can't imagine.
I really liked the adults in this book--Trudie was so strong, and through Nana we can see she had such a positive attitude even in the face of such a horrible disease, and Nana herself is awesome--she reminds me of my own grandma in some ways and that is high praise. Jack is so strong and such a great dad. I can't say alot more without spoilers.
Review from Blkosiner's Book Blog by Brandi Kosiner