Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Book Review and GIVEAWAY: All That I Can Fix, by Crystal Chan {ends 9/18}

Earlier on that same Thursday, Mr. Jenkins, the crazy guy on the edge of town, the guy who owned an exotic zoo filled with tigers, panthers, hyenas, and elephants and the like but who never fed them very well (they all had ribs poking out like the black keys on a piano)—he decided to go and shoot himself dead, but not before opening up all the cages and letting his animals loose. Of course, in that windstorm, the animalsbeing caged up for years and yearsfreaked out and ran. So there we were, Makersville, Indiana, the sudden focus of TV reporters and animal rights groups and gun rights advocates, thrown in the spotlight when we hadn't hardly existed just a couple hours before. Goes to show what a tiger can do.

This book was apparently based on a zoo outbreak from 2011, in Zanesville, Ohio, and it was interesting to see how the author wove the "animals on the loose" plotline throughout the book.

Official synopsis:
Book Review and GIVEAWAY: All That I Can Fix, by Crystal Chan
In Makersville, Indiana, people know all about Ronney—he’s from that mixed-race family with the dad who tried to kill himself, the pill-popping mom, and the genius kid sister. If having a family like that wasn’t bad enough, the local eccentric at the edge of town decided one night to open up all the cages of his exotic zoo—lions, cheetahs, tigers—and then shoot himself dead. Go figure. Even more proof that you can't trust adults to do the right thing.

Overnight, news crews, gun control supporters, and gun rights advocates descend on Makersville, bringing around-the-clock news coverage, rallies, and anti-rallies with them. With his parents checked out, Ronney is left tending to his sister’s mounting fears of roaming lions, stopping his best friend from going on a suburban safari, and shaking loose a lonely boy who follows Ronney wherever he goes. Can Ronney figure out a way to hold it together as all his worlds fall apart?

From acclaimed author Crystal Chan comes an incisive tale of love, loyalty, and the great leaps we take to protect the people and places we love most.

As you can probably tell from the synopsis, this isn't your typical YA novel—yes, there's still one character who is "secretly" in love with another, but that character's father also tried to kill himself recently, and he and his family are still dealing with the fallout from that. 

You also have lions, tigers, and bears (okay, maybe no bears ...) running around, which makes the townspeople very uneasy. 

The main character, Ronney, was very easy to related to, for me, even though he was a teenage boy—he has an unrequited crush on a girl, George, who only sees him as a friend. His family is falling apart because his dad tried (and failed) to commit suicide a few months earlier, and he has basically shouldered his dad's adult responsibilities: he fixes the house, and sometimes even stays home from school to do so. So when his friend Jello proposes a safari—finding the escaped zoo animals and taking pictures of them, for Jello's budding photography career—he agrees. 

I liked this book a lot though like I said, it's definitely not your typical YA book. All of the characters were pretty interesting, Ronney being the most interesting one, and they were all multifaceted. I'd recommend this book for anyone who likes a good novel, or who has an interest in animals, as a big part of it was the zoo animals' escape. 

4 stars out of 5.
{click here to purchase}

*Disclosure: I received a copy of this book for reviewing purposes. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own.


Three of my lucky readers will win a copy of All That I Can Fix!

Enter via the widget below. Giveaway will end on Tuesday, September 18th, at 11:59pm EST, and winners will be notified via email the next day, and have 24 hours to respond, or an alternate winner(s) will be chosen.

U.S. residents only, please.

Good luck!

3 copies of All That I Can Fix, by Crystal Chan


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