Something, Maybe by Elizabeth Scott (Ages 13 and up)
Being the daughter of two famous people can definitely have its drawbacks. Hannah is trying to find herself confidence lurking somewhere in the shadows of the bright lights surrounding her parents. Her mother is still grieving over the loss of Hannah's step-father. Her biological father only seems to be interested in her when ratings are low. Hannah is convinced Josh is the perfect guy for her. Finn, a boy at work and school is purely there as an annoyance. Her best friend Teagan cheers her on and tries to be the voice of reason. Will Hannah's efforts to remain invisible fail? In the end will she realize she shines just as bright as those who truly care about her? Definite recommendation from me.
Broken Soup by Jenny Valentine (Ages 13 and up)
Rowan is holding the family together, after the death of her brother Jack. Problem is, it's been several years since Jack's passing. Her mother is beyond help at this point and doesn't even realize Rowan and her sister, Stroma are there half the time. While in the store on day, a boy gives Rowan a photo negative. It's not hers and the small piece of film is the first piece of a mystery that leads everyone to some amazing, life altering truths. What will happen with the boy, Harper who gave Rowan the negative too? As everyone holds on to their pieces of Jack, yet tries to get on with life, while not completely losing him. I loved this book. Rowan was a strong character with a terrific voice. I also loved the fact that it's set in London so I get little pieces of the British slang. I guess I should say, "I love this book to bits!"
I've noticed a trend lately. It was in both of these books, okay not so much in Something, Maybe but for sure in Broken Soup. It's also in The Hunger Games, which I'm currently reading and I even saw (somewhat) in a movie also. A parent so overwhelmed with grief that they can not move past it to function in every day life. While losing anyone in life is horrible and I absolutely understand deep grief. I'm sure there are days that feel inescapable. Now, here is where I will most likely sound like a heartless, unsympathetic person. However, when you have other children you can not afford to check out. It surprises me how that seems to be a common theme in literature lately. It would unimaginable to lose a child, beyond horrific. BUT, you can't let the other children remaining suffer anymore than they already do at the loss of their sibling. Yes, I know this is fiction. Isn't alot of fiction grounded in reality though? All I can say is, I hope that I never know grief of that degree.