Thursday, November 5, 2009

Whistling in the Dark by Lesley Kagen

Synopsis: It was the summer on Vliet Street when we all started locking our doors...

Sally O'Malley made a promise to her daddy before he died. She swore she'd look after her sister, Troo. Keep her safe. But like her Granny always said-actions speak louder than words. Now, during the summer of 1959, the girls' mother is hospitalized, their stepfather has abandoned them for a six pack, and their big sister, Nell, is too busy making out with her boyfriend to notice that Sally and Troo are on the Loose. And so is a murderer and molester.

Highly imaginative Sally is pretty sure of two things. Who the killer is. And that she's next on his list. Now she has no choice but to protect herself and Troo as best she can, relying on her own courage and the kindness of her neighbors.

Quotes from the book: Because Troo and me were pretty hungry, Troo came up with another one of her famous plans. She said, "We should just start showing up at people's houses around suppertime."

"The morning Mother told us she was sick, Troo and me were just laying in the lime summer grass, smelling the bleach comin' off the wash that jitterbugged on the line and getting ready to play that name game with her."
"I...gave him my best smile, the one where my dimples got so big you could hide a piece of Double Bubble in `em."

My thoughts:I loved this book! I grew up in the 50's and so many of the book's references like Sky King, My Friend Flicka & Rin Tin Tin brought back fond memories. We also played after dark in the summer in our neighborhood.
This book held such contrasts. It was part murder mystery and part a story of childhood innocence. It was charming, funny, sweet, sad, and satisfying. I loved the O'Malley sisters, especially Sally, from who's point of view the story is told. In spite of the tragedies that the girls and people in the neighborhood live through, it is an enjoyable read. I will be reading more books by this author.
Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher: NAL Trade (May 1, 2007)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0451221230
ISBN-13: 978-0451221230


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