“Because blood is blood, and every family has its own force.
Its own flavor.
Its own charm and strange.”
Win is a young man, sent to boarding school in Vermont after a family tragedy. He keeps that past hidden and pushes away everyone who might become a friend. He has a secret. He knows there is a darkness inside him. But some things are too painful to remember, and he may be keeping secrets even from himself. Until a fateful night and a party when he is forced to face his demons.
This is a difficult book to summarize without giving away too much of the story. It is told in alternating chapters, switching between the present and flashbacks to the fateful summer that set him on the path to where he is now. There are some parallels to Girl Child by Tupelo Hassman in terms of abuse and recovery. But this book delves much more deeply into the dark side of the mental and emotional damage caused by that abuse.
This is a painful story, a difficult story. It is a story that will stay with me for a long time. I can’t say that I enjoyed it. It’s not the sort of book you enjoy. But it made me think. I don’t think I would ever have read this book if not for the The Hub’s Morris Challenge. But I’m glad I did.
Warning: As you may suspect of a story about dark family secrets, this book does include accounts of abuse that may be upsetting or triggering for some readers.