Wednesday, March 4, 2015

The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley by Shaun David Hutchinson (Book Blog Tour, Review & Giveaway)

About the Book:
THE FIVE STAGES OF ANDREW BRAWLEY by: Shaun David Hutchinson Publisher: Simon Pulse Pages: 336 Published: January 20, 2015
 A heartbreaking yet uplifting story of grief about a boy who has lost everything, but finds new hope drawing in the shadows of a hospital. Features a thirty-two-page graphic novel. Andrew Brawley was supposed to die that night, just like the rest of his family. Now he lives in the hospital, serving food in the cafeteria, hanging out with the nurses, sleeping in a forgotten supply closet. Drew blends in to near invisibility, hiding from his past, his guilt, and those who are trying to find him. His only solace is in the world of the superhero he’s created—Patient F. Then, one night, Rusty is wheeled into the ER, half his body burned by hateful classmates. Rusty’s agony calls out to Drew like a beacon, pulling them both together though all their pain and grief. In Rusty, Drew sees hope, happiness, and a future for both of them. A future outside of the hospital, and away from their pasts. But to save Rusty, Drew will have to confront Death, and life will have to get worse before it gets better. And by telling the truth about who he really is, Drew risks destroying any chance future.
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This quiet but powerful story is set almost entirely in the hospital where Andrew Brawley lives, haunted by the loss of his family. He works in the cafeteria and makes friends with some of the kids in the cancer ward, but no one knows Andrew's secret. During the day he wanders the halls, evading the woman he calls "Death," and at night he channels his grief into "Patient F," a comic book he's created about a revenge-obsessed renegade with a horrific past. Then one night a boy is brought into the hospital with severe burns, the apparent victim of a hate crime. Andrew takes it upon himself to watch over the burned boy, Rusty, and the two form a close connection. As the prospect of leaving the hospital looms, Andrew's fears crescendo, revealing the dark secrets of his past--as well as Rusty's.

Hutchinson doesn't shy away from difficult topics, but he writes with such delicate intensity that the result is a novel that's serious without being morose, and poignant without being preachy. With a unique voice and bold graphic novel portions intertwined, 'The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley's is an arresting, emotionally raw story of choosing hope over grief, and moving forward to overcome unthinkable trauma.

One thing I really liked about this book was the relationship Andrew managed to have with the patients and the nurses. I liked that they cared for one another and the things Andrew did for them melted my heart. It was absolutely touching reading about the love and supports.

The ending was better than I had hoped for. I serious liked the drawings in the end that illustrated the life Andrew was going to live after all the stuff he had been through.

Love's more than holding hands and going to dances. It's two people who struggle to live, even when they should maybe both be dead. When one of them would be better off dead.

I'm not sure if the Bible is a real book written by God or just a collection of stories for people who need help putting their hearts back together, but it's comforting, and I try not to think about it.

Sometimes I think of myself as a savior of the lost, a caretaker to the found.
Meet the Author:
"I’m Shaun David Hutchinson, you can call me Shaun. Or Hutch. I’ll respond to anything.  I’m the author of books for young adults, the first of which was The Deathday Letter, and the most recent of which are The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley (out 1/20/2015) and the anthology Violent Ends (Fall 2015).

I was born in West Palm Beach, FL, and grew up in Jupiter, FL where I’ve lived most of my life save for a couple of adventures in Atlanta and Rhode Island. 

I always knew I wanted to be a writer but it took me a long time to figure out I could be one. I’ve been a database developer, managed a wine company, slung coffee at Starbucks, and once spent a creepy month working in a statuary. Luckily, that was before I’d seen the Weeping Angels on Doctor Who.  

I studied literature in college where I fell in love with Beowulf and Chaucer and Gothic literature. I also studied emergency medicine at one time and insurance at another. Currently, I work in IT and fill my remaining hours with freelance web design, database design, and editing."
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Follow the Tour:
March 2nd ~ Word Spelunking  – Review/Top Ten
March 2ndUnconventional Librarian – Guest Post
March 3rd ~ The Cover Contessa – Top Ten/Playlist
March 3rdReads All The Books – Review
March 4thWhat A Nerd Girl Says – Author Interview/GP
March 4th ~ Bookish - Debbie  – Review
March 5th ~ Beth - Fangirlish – Review
March 5th ~ The Reading Date – Review
March 6thBook Chic – Review
March 6thPixie Vixen Book Reviews  – Review
March 6thBooks a' la Mode – Review
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