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Parents' Guide to

The Art of Breaking Things

By Mandie Caroll, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Compelling story of teen sex assault, healing power of art.

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What you will—and won't—find in this book.

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Is It Any Good?

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Kids say (1 ):

Laura Sibson's coming-of-age novel thoughtfully takes on issues of childhood sexual assault, substance abuse, and consent, as well as the complicated nature of healing from trauma. With its relatable teen characters and evocative, often beautiful prose, The Art of Breaking Things is a realistic story with a relevant message. Though Skye makes some unhealthy choices to cope, she grows towards responsible maturity over the course of the story. Creative teens will especially appreciate how Skye uses art to understand her experiences. Skye is a character that young people will surely root for.

Teens will also benefit from the novel's look at consent in several different situations. The message that consent must be freely and enthusiastically given comes through loud and clear. With its practical treatment of teen sexuality, the book doesn't underestimate or condescend to its young adult readers. A few metaphors can feel contrived, and there are some characters who don't seem to move the story forward, but on the whole, this is a well-written and compelling read.

Book Details

  • Author: Laura Sibson
  • Genre: Coming of Age
  • Topics: High School
  • Book type: Fiction
  • Publisher: Viking
  • Publication date: June 18, 2019
  • Number of pages: 400
  • Available on: Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, Kindle
  • Last updated: August 7, 2019

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