Kiss of Broken Glass by Madeleine Kuderick

Kiss of Broken Glass by Madeleine Kuderick

Release Date: September 9, 2014

Publisher: HarperTeen
Rated: YA 14+
Format: Hardback
Source: Publisher
Buy: AmazonThe Book Depository
Goodreads Website

In the next seventy-two hours, Kenna may lose everything—her friends, her freedom, and maybe even herself. One kiss of the blade was all it took to get her sent to the psych ward for seventy-two hours. There she will face her addiction to cutting, though the outcome is far from certain.

When fifteen-year-old Kenna is found cutting herself in the school bathroom, she is sent to a facility for mandatory psychiatric watch. There, Kenna meets other kids like her—her roommate, Donya, who’s there for her fifth time; the birdlike Skylar; and Jag, a boy cute enough to make her forget her problems . . . for a moment.

Of course, when I first saw this book, I was drawn to the cover immediately. THAT TYPOGRAPHY. THAT GLASS. THAT EVERYTHING. When I got the chance to review this book, I swooped at it. I mean, come on, THAT COVER. However, I didn’t know that it was a novel in verse. I haven’t read one in ages, and I love novels written in verse because not only are they really fast to read, but also has a lyrical quality that prose sometimes doesn’t. I took literature in high school, but sometimes I don’t get poetry, but thankfully novels in verse is something that I actually understand. Anyway, Kiss of Broken Glass was an emotional roller coaster. It’s based on the author’s life (her daughter’s experience) and so knowing that it brings to light the shocking reality that this does happen, and it the fact that it happens quite often and even to those at a young age. It’s really sad to read about it for sure, especially since I don’t really know anyone who has gone through the experience, but it’s definitely an eye-opener that I needed to read.

This book really reminded me of Ellen Hopkins’s style of writing. For those of you who don’t know, she writes about teens with problems who find each other at rehab centers, much like how Kenna finds Donya, Skylar and Jag, all in verse. However, the problem I find with verse is that sometimes you can’t get into the character’s head because the words are fleeting and the pace is a lot faster. Descriptions aren’t also in depth, and there’s more interpretation from the reader’s side. However, I could feel like I got Kenna’s character just because there would be certain sections of the novel when it would focus on her character’s feelings.

The characters in this book were great, but other than Kenna, I don’t feel like we as readers get much of a chance to get to know them more. True, the timespan of this book is SUPER short (short book, short timeline), but even then, it would have been nice to learn a teeny bit more about the other characters. Jag especially. Skylar is probably the character other than Kenna that I got to know about, but for a “love interest,” Jag barely had a role. Very little character interaction, I must say. However, maybe that was the point and I just missed it. These experiences are fleeting and short, but the impression they leave on you can last forever. Kenna’s time at the facility was super short but during that 72 hour period, she learned so much more about herself from observing and interacting (a little bit) with those around her.

Kiss of Broken Glass was gorgeous, rhapsodic, and moving– a breathtaking eye-opener that I couldn’t stop reading. Kuderick’s words have the ebb and flow of waves, both smooth and powerful, sucking you into the depths of what truly lies beneath the surface. I look forward to reading more from her in the future.

▪ ▪ ▪ Thank you so much to Alice at HarperCollins 360 for sending me a copy for review! ▪ ▪ 

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