Little River, New York, 1994: April Sawicki is living in a run-down motorhome, flunking out of school, and picking up shifts at the local diner. But when April realizes she's finally had enough-enough of her selfish, absent father and barely surviving in an unfeeling town-she decides to make a break for it.
... not a book to pick up lightly — it will make you fall in love with the characters, it will break your heart, it will make you laugh and cry and feel all the emotions the characters feel through author Allison Larkin's tremendous talent for bringing characters to life ... worth every gut-wrenching turn along the way ... Interspersed with lyrics, Larkin’s writing is simple yet profound. The novel demands that readers pause to digest it in spite of the urge to keep devouring every word. April is a difficult character to leave behind, but The People We Keep gratifies readers with a keenly satisfying ending that feels real and beautiful and worth the tears shed to get there.
... propulsive ... intimate, urgent and direct; April's first-person voice is magnetic, compelling ... This is a novel of great empathy, about connections and coming of age, built families and self-acceptance. It contains heartbreak and redemption, and a plucky, irresistible protagonist. For any reader who's ever wished they could go, or wished they could stay.
Larkin has created a memorable character in April, whose journey toward belonging and self-acceptance will resonate with readers. The depiction of the mid-1990s is pitch-perfect and will invoke feelings of nostalgia, especially in Gen Xers who came of age during this era. Fans of Caitlin Moran’s How to Build a Girl (2014) will enjoy traveling alongside April.