Something to Live For

Something to Live For

by Lissa Halls Johnson

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up Two talented Christian teenage girls dream of writing and singing their way to success in the religious music world. Halfway through their senior year, Kerry's family is transferred from Los Angeles to Colorado. The separation from her friends and the disappointment of rejection letters from music publishers push Kerry into a deep depression which results in her suicide. Shocked and confused, her family and hometown friends are confronted with the reality of coping with the guilt, anger, and pain induced by the suicide. Johnson has constructed a realistic portrayal of a teenager's descent into despondency. Although the dramatization of electing Kerry prom queen in absentia at her former school as she simultaneously dies from an overdose of pills strains the story's credibility, very few readers will remain dry-eyed. Adolescent and adult characters illustrate successful and not-so-successful ways of coping. References to cluster suicides are incorporated into the background, and a fact sheet identifying pre-suicide symptoms is appended. The religious framework may confine this book to Christian schools and church libraries, but the novel does reinforce the fact that no one can be isolated from suicide. Johnson offers an optimistic outlook to survivors of suicide, but Peck's Remembering the Good Times (Delacorte, 1985) is a better choice for school and public library collections. Cynthia K. Leibold, Anderson High School, Cincinnati

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Baker Publishing Group
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