Hugging the Rock
By Susan Taylor Brown
(Tricycle Press, Paperback, 9781582462363, 176pp.)
Publication Date: June 1, 2008
Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover
What do you do when your mom runs away from home?
Rachel retreats into herself--away from the father who has always kept his distance, away from school, and away from her best friend. Rachel’s mom says that her dad is a rock, the good kind you can always count on. But Rachel doesn’t even know if he really loves her. And she doesn’t know the secrets he’s kept since before she was born. Slowly, over time, Rachel grows close to the parent who stayed and comes to understand the truth of why her mom left.
This bittersweet story of loss and revelation reveals the powerful and complex bond between fathers and daughters.
“I never knew my father,” says Susan Taylor Brown. “If I never told you anything else about me, that would say a lot about why I wrote this book. Because I didn’t know him, didn’t know anyone from his family, I invented elaborate stories in which I was suddenly ‘found’ and reunited with a father who loved me, who wanted me, who needed me to make his life complete. Of course, that never happened. In writing this book I gave myself the father I’ve never known.” Susan lives in San Jose, California, with her husband, her dog, and more than 5,000 books.
“Brown creates a poignant work dealing with a topic rare in children’s literature. In spare, poetic prose, the pain and angst of a young girl whose bipolar mother leaves, never to return, is detailed. The heart of the story is the growing relationship between Rachel and her father--a rock with soft spots--and how they must learn to live, love, cope--go on with their lives--together. Readers will hug this book. I did.” --Lee Bennett Hopkins