Friday, June 24, 2011
Hidden by Helen Frost was recently recommended by several people I follow on Twitter. Wow! Were they ever right!!! As much as I loved Okay For Now by Gary D. Schmidt and felt like it had "medal" written all over it, I feel the exact same way about Hidden.
Frost once again strikes gold with her writing. The story is written entirely in verse and is told from two different points of view: Wren and Darra. What makes this book so compelling is that when Wren is young, she gets "kidnapped" by Darra's father, and years later they run into each other at the same summer camp. Both girls have many issues through the years - Wren has dealt with the trauma of being taken and Darra has dealt with a somewhat abusive father who ended up in jail.
The book is divided into 3 parts: the first part is the story told from Wren's viewpoint, the second part is Darra's perspective, and the third part takes place at camp, many years later, and alternates between Wren and Darra telling the story through their own lens.
Frost manages to put in a "form" that further enhances the readers' understanding. Whenever we are reading Darra's point of view, the last words in the long lines combine together to let us know more of what Darra is thinking. It's like a story within a story, much the same as Diamond Willow.
The first two sections help build wonderful background knowledge of this traumatic event through the eyes of both girls. Then, the camp scenes, when the girls come to realize who the other one is, are very gripping. The story is powerful and I shed more than one tear as the story came to a conclusion.
Hidden is a book I plan on rereading multiple times to fully grasp all the nuances. It is a truly amazing read!
For more reviews of this amazing book:
The Reading Zone
The Musings of a Book Addict