Williams, Carol Lynch. Adeline Street. New York: Delacorte Press, 1995.
I felt as if we were being disloyal to Kelly. I like Christmas and all, but Kelly went wild over it. She just liked giving. She'd save all her money for months. She'd make gifts at school ir sit in our walk-in closet, working on stuff for me and Momma and Daddy and papa. She would hide the presents in secret places, all wrapped up. Then, when you were right in the middle of a good show on TV, she'd say, "I know what you're getting for Christmas," in a singsong voice. It used to irritate me. Now I wouldn't mind if she'd do it just one more time.
Since her sister Kelly's death, everything has seemed different to Leah. She wakes up from nightmares she doesn't remember, only to see her younger sister's empty bed and realize the nightmare hasn't stopped just because she's awake.
Really interesting structure. The first half of the novel felt like a collection of short stories, just little moments that stood out, whereas the rest of it flowed more like a typical novel. I thought that mirrored the grieving process well, it was like a little lesson in psychology. There were some great sense of place moments. And I was surprised by how much I got into certain parts. Like when the wind was blowing and then just stopped, I started freaking out. “Holy crap, get the heck out of there! I’ve never even been to Florida and I know something’s wrong with that!” Yeah, I yell at my books. It’s not usually a problem unless I’m reading during class. Anyway, this is an excellent book for middle graders dealing with the death of a family member.