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Cage of Stars Paperback – 3 May 2007
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Cage of Stars explores one family's irrevocable change in an instant of violence . . . Jacquelyn Mitchard just keeps getting better and better (Jodi Picoult)
A thrill-ride of a novel - psychologically gripping, wonderfully paced; a marvellously rendered portrait of the way violence colours our lives. This is the break-out read of the year (Karin Slaughter)
Cage of Stars is vintage Mitchard (Jane Hamilton)
'A first-rate storyteller' (Newsweek)
'Jacquelyn Mitchard renders her characters flawlessly, endowing them with a humanity that is both accessibly grounded and astonishingly deep' (Booklist)
The stunning new novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Jacquelyn Mitchard.See all Product description
Top customer reviews
As `Ronnie' grows up and processes the grief whilst welcoming the birth of a new sibling, she looks to her faith for guidance. As her life begins to regain normality, she plans her future with best friend Clare and falls in love with the tough neighbour boy Miko. Everything she knows and trusts is tested when her parents choose to publicly forgive their daughter's murderer, Scott Early. Unable to accept what her parents have done, Ronnie carves a path that will shape her life than more she ever expected.
Mitchard is able to capture the true voice of a teen in tragedy whilst able to blend the complex Mormon faith for readers to understand. Although not directly considered a YA novel, I believe due to the age of Ronnie throughout most of the book that it can be placed in this category. Blending adult issues and themes with teenage angst of true love that's dampened by different faiths, Cage of Stars is a complex story of forgiveness.
Capturing grace and honestly, Mitchard is able to portray intense tragedy and how people move on. At the same time she's able to keep Ronnie's voice true. The tone and language used never falters from the teenage context, even as she becomes a young adult. Slow paced but powerful, Cage of Stars is a great novel to nurse the heart through a difficult time. Ronnie's strength will inspire, whereas her daring will provide an open channel to process those `what if's?' we all feel when tragedy hits home. Lastly, her resolve creates peace and sets an example that no mater bad things are, it's important to hang on for just a little longer.
My heart broke for Ronnie...her hurt felt so real. However...this wasn't 'unputdownable' hence the three stars...it was 'okay' overall.
Ronnie is only twelve when her younger sisters are tragically murdered and as a consequence her own childhood is ended as instead of long carefree days, she has to cope with her feelings and her faith. The family, and the community they live in are Mormons (apart from the Sissinelli's who are Catholic). I can't comment on the accuracy of the facts concerning the Mormon faith, but faith in general is key in Ronnie and her parents lives, the latter eventually feeling they can only 'move on' if they forgive the man who killed their daughters. Because she is a child, Ronnie tends to ask the questions of religion that many of us may have wondered about as children (and some of us as adults!).
Religion does feature quite a lot from using scripture to comfort and inspire, to the need of so many humans to believe in an 'afterlife'. I particularly liked the discussion between Miko Sissinelli and Ronnie where they indulge in friendly bickering about each others religions.
Faith often helps grieving people and the message in this story is that although there are many religions with all their little quirks, really they're not very different when it comes down to the real issues.
Veronica, hiding in the woodshed (the girls were playing hide and seek) sees everything that happens. She is not afraid, though the killer by now is holding his head and screaming. Veronica summons help from a neighbour and the police.
The family are all members of the Church of the Latter Day Saints. Two years or so later the Church of the LDS elders arrange a meeting for the perpetrator to be forgiven by the family. The only one who doesn't attend is Veronica, who is fifteen.
I nearly threw the book away at that point. Veronica cannot forgive, like the rest of her family. She has her hair cut, dyes it brown and then gets a job looking after the small daughter of the man who killed her sisters. Does anyone recognise her? No. Some people may wish to read this book, so I won't say what happens. It is unbelievable from beginning to end. Sometimes a book may be disturbing as well as entertaining, but this is just awful. It's a grubby piece of sentimental sensationalism with a lot of praying and a risible plot.
A twelve year old girl Ronnie witnesses the murders of her two younger sisters and lives with the fallout with a plan of revenge. An interesting point is that this family is Mormon. Mitchard does a great job of portraying a normal Mormon family and does a good job of describing the faith (a few minor quibbles that members will pick up on, but a very fair treatment) and the challenges without being sensational, unreasonably saintly, or making us seem weirder than we are.
I think that the story is a great modern alternative read. Different, but not in a way that should put you off. If you like this try "Christmas Present" also by Mitchard.
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Most recent customer reviews
Veronica is a young Mormon girl with two young sisters.Read more
The story starts well and the concept is good but the pace is too slow.Read more
Anyway, I still stand by my comments that there is more detail about the Mormon church than I...Read more