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THIS YOUNG ADULT NOVEL'S TUGGING AT MY HEART

By CATHERINE

Yes, you can judge a book by its cover. The evolution of the little gray T-shirt from rigid and boxy to something a little more comfortable-looking to something downright pretty grabbed my attention. The magnetic effect of this cover put my hands on autopilot, and I pulled the book off the shelf. 

The back cover sold me!  Again, the same three gray T's, but this time with the tiniest hint of the story inside...

Boxy T: "What if who you are on the outside"

Comfortable T: "doesn't match"

Pretty T: "who you are on the inside?"

About five years ago, I had to introduce myself to a room full of members of a social organization I was joining. My speech began with the story of my parents – father, Catholic priest; mother, church organist – and a man in the audience said, "Oh, I know where this is going!" 

Everybody laughed, but nobody said, "We know what's going to happen; don't bother finishing the story."

That's the beauty of books and an imagination. My adult brain knew what the evolution of the T-shirts meant, but I wanted to read the story anyway! 

One of my favorite authors, John Irving, wrote in either The Water-Method Man or The 158-Pound Marriage something to the effect of:  it doesn't matter if the reader knows the ending. The point was that a good author can make the reader want to experience and savor the joy of every word on the journey of the story.

I am reading Gracefully Grayson every night before falling asleep. I've reached an important part of the story, and the raw and tender emotions of Grayson that Ami Polonsky so beautifully and consistently writes tug at my heart. 

A little voice in my brain vies for my attention: "Oh, I know where this is going!" But I'm ignoring it.  I'm two-thirds done, and already wishing there were another Grayson book to pick up when I finish this one. 

©2017 Catherine M. Greenspan