I was very much looking forward to reading this book, as lightning strike survivors is not a common subject to read about. What I got was a lot more.
The story follows two seemingly unrelated kids, Becca Burke and Buckley Pitank, as they navigate broken homes, adolescence, troubled adulthoods, and all sorts of bad decisions along the way. They do not know each other and spend most of the book miles apart. What links them, however, is that Becca is a lightning strike survivor and Buckley has lost loved ones to lightning strikes. Ultimately, these details will bring Becca and Buckley together, acknowledging the idea that it is indeed a small world.
Michele Young-Stone writes the lives of Becca and Buckley very thoroughly. Each story was fascinating in it's own way, rich with character and cause and effect from realistic situations. Unfortunately, I felt distracted by having to switch back and forth between lives, and instead was tempted to read one story all the way through and then return to read the other in it's entirety. I did enjoy the little excerpts from the Handbook itself. There is little actual happiness within the stories, making it an emotional read. Push all the way to the end and the reader may feel like a survivor themselves.