This book will be available for purchase on February 2, 2010.
From the outside, Lucy's home looks normal. inside the front door is where the secrets begin--the floor-to-ceiling piles of newspaper and magazines, the bags of junk flooding every inch of open space, the line of mold creeping along the window frames. This is what she's kept from everyone--her mother's compulsive hoarding has reduced their lives to garbage.
It's only two years until graduation, when Lucy can leave this place behind. Her friendship with Kaylie and the newfound attention of her crush, Josh, have made her life in the meantime feel almost normal. Then Lucy comes home one morning to find her mother dead. Should she dial 911 right away and expose her family? Or protect their secret, and her mother's dignity, by cleaning up the house before reporting her mother's death? Her choice will change her life forever.
Character Development: 10/10
Overall Enjoyment: 9/10
Total Score: 66/70
Obtained: free ARC provided by publisher (WALKER & COMPANY)
Age Appropriate? PG
Cussing: Some, but not too much.
Alcohol, Drugs, etc: Teen drinking and drunkenness, teen smoking.
Sexual Content: None.
Disturbing Images/Violence: Child neglect, insanity that is occasionally uncomfortable.
C. J. Omololu has crafted a surprisingly powerful, heavy book in just over two hundred pages. Her vivid imagery and mature voice, combined with the controversial subject matter, make for a fascinating read that will truly open your eyes to a very different way of life. Dirty Little Secrets is a perfectly executed novel with a smoothly arcing plot and a wonderful protagonist.
Lucy was an unusual and engaging character whose circumstances really made for an excellent story. The ebb and flow of her emotions were seamlessly timed, climaxing and receding at just the right moments to evoke a response. I empathized with Lucy--her frustration was my frustration, her indecision was mine. Beautifully done.
With insight and sensitivity, Dirty Little Secrets is a conflicting, tense book that ends in a brilliant cathartic release. Short, but packed with energy and force, this story is perfect for a reader of the unconventional and the dynamic.
C. J. Omololu
Interview with C. J. Omololu