“What bothered me most, though, was that i couldn’t fix anything. I couldn’t control anything. It was like driving a bumper car without a steering wheel. I kept getting slammed, and I just had to sit there and hold on tight.”
I came to this book with very high expectations after hearing so many positive reviews….yet sadly was massively underwhelmed. I was a huge fan of “The One and Only Ivan” so was expecting something of a similar calibre…… however this book actually left me feeling pretty down. I was disturbed by the irresponsible parenting exhibited and completely frustrated by the lame excuses and shapeless, structureless, boundary-lacking home life this fragile family existed in. I wanted to shake these parents up and scream at them(well kind of…I’m not really like that- however, it did anger me).
Jackson must endure days of hunger and the insecurity of not knowing where he will sleep at night- having to live out of his parent’s minivan for extended periods. Due to all of the stress he experiences- Jackson invents an imaginary friend- an enormous cat- whom he calls Crenshaw. Through the outlet of venting his frustrations and worries to this unusual creature- Jackson is able to persevere and manages to get by in school, miraculously. The book has an unsatisfying ending as well… it is ill-defined; the problems faced due to his father’s unfortunate chronic medical condition of Multiple Sclerosis are not fully resolved- but perhaps, this is the reality of the messy public healthcare system which exists in the United States today. Sorry, I can’t recommend this book.