Happy to say that after a long and honestly very boring break, I am back!
I hope you are all well and ready for Summer!
Today I’m going to talk about a book by one of my favourite authors.
Thanks For The Trouble by Tommy Wallach is a contemporary YA magical realism novel that follows Parker Santé, an anomalous teen living in San Francisco who hasn’t spoken in five years. Parker’s voice is now a pen and paper and as result of his lack of friends, spends nearly all of his time in hotels, skipping school in the process. He feels stagnant, stood still in a world where others are planning their futures, deciding who they want to be. This all changes of course when he meets Zelda Toth, a peculiar girl who, like him has a penchant for hotels as well as her grey hair.
This book is a gift, a palate cleanser in an ocean of too pungent and too saturated young adult narratives. Like many successful stories, I believe Thanks For The Trouble’s beauty is born from its characters. Parker Santé has a classic YA superpower, or anti-power in the fact that he can’t speak but this feature doesn’t become annoying or unnecessary like it easily could. In fact Parker’s lack of vocals give the reader a nudge towards who he really is, a traumatised teenage boy, whilst they are searching in the jungle of the storyline. This feature in itself is another trait that helps TFTT hold its own because it is as though as the reader finds out more details and solves more puzzles regarding their main character, Parker himself does too and there is a comfortable pace in this.
Zelda Toth is a pulsing and delightfully abnormal character. There are a lot of finer threads that weave together to form the dazzling tapestry of her personality however to me, I think that it’s best you discover these on your own. I will say one thing, Wallach’s use of the fantastical through Zelda was perhaps my favourite part of the book because in the most casual and glamorous way the writer lets us know that oh by the way Zelda lives forever. Immortality is a subject that I find to be forever fascinating and the way its played out in this book only gripped me more.
This book certainly has its fair share of cliche scenarios and randomly perfect scenes that never seem to happen in real life (Where is my midnight beach party?) but please don’t let any of these events put you off. Through the scope of Wallach’s wonderful cast of characters none of these segments ever felt overly arduous and at times I even found myself escaping into the wonderful fairy land that is being an American teenager in a Californian city in a young adult novel.
I give this book a 3.7 out of 5 stars.
Keep on reading!
And thanks again Beth