The Long Weekend by Savita Kalhan was one of those books where I really didn’t know what to expect. In the beginning I was a little nervous about how I would like this one because it seemed to be a middle grade read with younger protagonists but I wanted to give it a try because Melissa had said such good things about it and I thought the premise was pretty creepy.
The Long Weekend is frightening. Not in a jumpy slasher film type of way but in the kind of way you get frightened when you sit down and watch the news for a few minutes. It’s totally plausible, makes you fear for the children in your life and makes you thoroughly disgusted with the capability of the human race. This book may be short but doesn’t lack in intensity. Two eleven year old boys, unsure of who is picking them up from school, get into the car of who they both assume to be the others parent. They are both horribly wrong….and they realize that as the weekend begins to unfold.
Through the beginning of this book I kept thinking it was definitely for middle grade students but as I kept reading I realized that the content would definitely not be appropriate for a younger reader. It’s not inappropriate or anything…it’s just frightening and deals with some more mature content as the story goes on. I would definitely take caution and read this before giving it to younger readers. I was SO impressed with the way that the author carefully and tactfully dealt with a certain situation in the book. It wasn’t explicit but you could very much deduce what had happened…and that’s all you needed. Anything more and you would be sick to your stomach. This book is thrilling and definitely horrifying..but not so much that you can’t stomach it. As I said, I’m really impressed with how carefully crafted this story was.
The most shining aspect of this book– Sam –the eyes through which we see this incredibly scary event. I felt that Savita nailed it with him. He felt genuine and very much like an 11 year old. He wasn’t too smart for his age, his feelings and fears were that of what you’d expect an 11 year old to have and he was just absolutely endearing. You find yourself rooting for the best possibly outcome for him and feel as though you want to just hug him if he makes it out of this ordeal.
My final thought: Don’t be fooled by the fact that the protagonists are young — this book is thrilling and deals with some mature and terrifying subject matter that will make your skin crawl because you KNOW it could happen.
Savita is awesome and is going to give one of you lovelies a chance to win a copy for yourself! Just leave me a comment and tell me either something that makes you cringe when you watch the news OR tell me, as Savita did below, a book that you think would be great for reluctant readers!
This blog tour is hosted by Melissa at I Swim For Oceans. Go check out the rest of the blogs on the tour! I have Savita Kalhan here to participate in a special top ten list as you all know my love for top tens (a la Top Ten Tuesday)…and today is Tuesday! Because I’d consider The Long Weekend to be a good pick for reluctant readers (especially teen boys)…Savita is going to share her list of Top Ten Books For Reluctant Readers!