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Right Behind You by Gail Giles

Right Behind You

by Gail Giles

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4042926,397 (4.11)13
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Showing 1-5 of 29 (next | show all)
'Right Behind You' is another book from the 'Great Books for Teens' discussion group I picked.

The story starts out with a young man handing his story (the book) to someone else and telling them they need to read it. The book is him trying to relate the events of his life to this new friend. But Kip's life has been anything but fun. When he was 9 years old, he got angry at another kid and, in a fit of rage, set him on fire. He is sent to a juvenile prison and spends the next 4 or so years there. Eventually, he is deemed well enough to leave and goes back to rejoin society.

Another book that I was surprised I enjoyed! Gail Giles' writing is clear and quick. The chapters are short but leave you wanting more. The only complaint I have is the "reader" of the story. They disappear and reappear from the narrative at inconsistent intervals. It made that part seem a bit stretched. I think it would have been better just to leave this piece of the story out. Or perhaps to just bookend it with them getting the book and maybe their reaction to Kip's story at the end.

All in all, this book was a quick, enjoyable read. Clearly it comes from the dark side of the YA shelves, but I felt that you could identify with Kip and that made it work. The conclusion wasn't as satisfying as the rest of the book, but if you can ignore the last page, you have a solid read on your hands.

Originally posted on orangerful.vox.com ( )
  orangerful | Aug 21, 2013 |
A so-so book. I really didn't get to emotionally invested. It is shelved at my local library in the Young Adult section, however, I found it to be more simplistic and Juvenile. the best part was the time he spent in the ward and I would have liked that time to have been more fleshed out. Hell of a life though. For not only Kip but for his family as well. ( )
  justablondemoment | Apr 23, 2013 |
I liked this book because it showed how a boy had to work through a horrible incident that he had caused and how it effected his whole family for years. It may be difficult for some teens to read but it does have good lessons to be learned. I think it would be a good book to use for a teen discussion group. ( )
  WickedWoWestwood | Feb 12, 2013 |
I'm a bit phys co I like creepy books like for this book ''Right Behind You ,Gail Giles". I read a lot of books really fast and I took a while to get in this book and i think that's the best part of this book. ( )
  Harry44 | Jun 24, 2012 |
Let me start out by saying that I was prepared to hate this book. I have very strongly held opinions on certain things, and one of them is that it's completely unforgiveable for someone to murder a child, even if the perpetrator was a child himself. I often cling to my beliefs and stubbornly refuse to be swayed, even, I'm ashamed to admit, when someone can logic me out of them. This book shook my beliefs.I found myself becoming so sympathetic to Kip/Wade, even if I didn't want to. There were extenuating circumstances, of course, that made Kip's act slightly different than one that might be committed by a truly sociopathic kid in training. Kip was intending to destroy something when he did it, and the fact that the victim caught fire was not intended. Does that make the act any easier to forgive or forget? No. Does it make it more excusable? No. Does it make it all right? No. But it does make the resulting journey to redemption more believable and desired.Kip/Wade spends his years after emerging from juvenile, moving around with his family, as, just because the doctor's say he's rehabilitated, the angry public do not agree. He takes on a new name, a new home, and must begin his life again battling the guilt and shame of what he did. If his journey were portrayed as anything less than grueling and remorseful, it wouldn't have been as easy to forgive him and begin to root for him. The author handles this progression through Kip's many stages of growth so thoroughly and well, that by the time the end comes, you are fully in Kip's corner.Kudos to Ms. Giles for tackling such a difficult topic. A short Q&A is at the back of the book, in which she stated that she had received so much hate mail, mainly from outraged adults, regarding this book. The fact that she had the courage to tell such a controversial story in the face of such disapproval is great, because I would not have wanted to miss this book. ( )
  TheTaleTemptress | Jan 28, 2011 |
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Always and always and always for Jim Giles and Josh Jakubik, my heroes.  --G.G.
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On the afternoon of his seventh birthday,  I set Bobby Clarke on fire.
I figured out that I can't forget. I can't really forgive. But I can live. Live with it. Like you live with a scar or a limp or whatever. You always know it's there. It reminds you never to let yourself do anything so stupid and horrible and wrong again. I step out of my rut, step again, and keep stepping. I live with it.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0316166367, Hardcover)

When he was nine, Kip set another child on fire. Now, after years in a juvenile ward, he is ready for a fresh start. But the ghosts of his past soon demand justice, and he must reveal his painful secret. How can Kip tell anyone that he really is--or was--a murderer?

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:19 -0400)

After spending over four years in a mental institution for murdering a friend in Alaska, fourteen-year-old Kip begins a completely new life in Indiana with his father and stepmother under a different name, but not only has trouble fitting in, he finds there are still problems to deal with from his childhood.… (more)

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