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<< Back to Last Night I Sang to the Monster

Last Night I Sang to the Monster

School Library Journal

 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars
"Gr 9 Up–At 18, Zach finds himself in a therapeutic residential program as both an alcoholic and a post-traumatic-stress patient. In evocative and compelling language, Sáenz allows an at-first barely articulate, almost amnesiac Zach to show his progress toward remembering and integrating his past into a present with which he can cope. He is guided along the way by a sympathetic and wise therapist, a middle-aged roommate whose own recovery is on an arc ahead of the youth’s, and several credible and interesting minor characters. The techniques and realities of such a facility are realistic and fully drawn: addicts who gather for cigarettes, nightmares, group sessions, breathing therapy. Sáenz weaves together Zach’s past, present, and changing disposition toward his future with stylistic grace and emotional insight.

This is a powerful and edifying look into both a tortured psyche and the methods by which it can be healed."
- September 15, 2009 

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