- Hardcover: 288 pages
- Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers (Jan. 5 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0544534298
- ISBN-13: 978-0544534292
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 2.7 x 21 cm
- Shipping Weight: 717 g
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #630,800 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
This Raging Light Hardcover – Dec 22 2015
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Winter 2015-2016 Kids' Indie Next Pick!
Her first-person narration is lyrical, akin to that of a Francesca Lia Block character, but there's an undercurrent of roughness in her voice heartbreakingly hopeful, lyrically told " - Kirkus
"Estelle Laure's prose is utterly gorgeous, even as it lays out the story of a girl dealing with the failings of her parents, death, and her own insecurities." -BookRiot
"Estelle Laure's This Raging Light might be YA, but it's got plenty of grown-up appeal." -entertainmentweekly.com
"Laure's debut stands out for her keen understanding of the spectrum of human emotions, and her ability to put tough feelings into beautiful prose."
- Horn Book
"In an assured debut, Laure gives Lucille a fierce stubbornness that keeps her going. . . The characters are well drawn, and Laure effectively depicts the adrenaline rush of love." - Publishers Weekly
" This Raging Light is a funny, heartwrenching, and soulful read as Lucille develops her own personal family, bloodline or not. It's not one you'll soon forget." -Bustle
"Lucille's fresh, first-person voice spills over with metaphor, poetically capturing her emotional landscape with force and fury, frantic love and absolute exhaustion." -Shelf Awareness
"Laure's debut is brilliant and not to be missed." - RT Book Reviews
"Lucille may not take down a beast or assassinate any super bads, but she's what heroines look like and love like in real life." -Justine magazine
"[a] poetic, heartbreaking read that will resonate with teens." - BookPage online
"The narrative rings authentic, especially as Lucille wrestles with romantic pangs. Thankfully, there's enough wry humor to balance the worry and poignancy. Above all, you'll love steadfast Lucille and keep caring about what comes next." - Atlanta Journal Constitution
"Lucille is a steel-strong, deeply human heroine fighting against impossible odds." -BNTEENblog
"Readers will be seduced by the love affair budding between Digby and Lucille as much as she is. The characters are believably flawed, but eminently likeable, leaving the reader with hope for humanity." -Montana Public Radio
"Laure's debut stands out for her keen understanding of the spectrum of human emotions, and her ability to put tough feelings into beautiful prose." -Horn Book
"Bursting with feeling, like a seventies pop song, Estelle Laure's This Raging Light should be read at a feverish clip and then passed on to your favorite friend." -Campus Circle
"I loved this book. I was torn between wanting to devour it in one breathless read and needing to stop and savor each gorgeous turn of phrase. This is a remarkable debut." -Morgan Matson, author of Amy & Roger's Epic Detour and Since You've Been Gone
" This Raging Light is a funny, poetic, big-hearted reminder that life can-and will-take us all by surprise sometimes." -Jennifer E. Smith, author of The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight and The Geography of You and Me
"Estelle Laure writes with power and lyricism-but more than that, she writes honestly from the heart. Definitely a writer to watch!" -A.M. Jenkins, Printz Honor winning author of Repossessed
"With This Raging Light, Estelle Laure establishes herself as a literary heavyweight. Laure's characters mimic her writing, at once visceral and brave, unafraid to confront love in its every facet-surprising, surpassing, flawed. This book is a thick quilt in a cold room, and I want to wrap myself in it." -David Arnold, author of Mosquitoland
"[Laure] has a raw, authentic voice and a passion for storytelling." -Matt de la Pena, Pura Belpree honoree and award-winning YA novelist of The Living and Mexican WhiteBoy
About the Author
Estelle Laure believes in love, magic, and the power of facing hard truths. She has a BA in Theatre Arts and an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts in Writing for Children and Young Adults, and she lives in Taos, New Mexico, with her family. Her work is translated widely around the world. Visit her at estellelaure.com and on Twitter at @starlaure.
From the Publisher
This Raging Light - A Powerful Story of Love in Imperfect Circumstances
A note from author Estelle Laure:
Lucille loves Digby.
It’s not a slow burn.
It’s not something she comes to quietly, over time.
One day she doesn’t love him, and the next she’s faced with the kind of love that is so powerful that, although he has a girlfriend, in spite of the fact that it’s the worst possible timing, she knows down to her knees that there is fate involved. If she walks away she will not only regret it, she will never get over it and it will cost her a piece of her soul.
How she contends with her love in the face of enormous personal tumult forces her to face the most fragile aspects of the human condition. But as she fights a failing battle to maintain her balance and care for her little sister, that same difficult love helps her uncover new dimensions and discover the strongest parts of herself.
Top customer reviews
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Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book in a giveaway in exchange for an honest review.
THIS RAGING LIGHT was one of my most highly anticipated December 2015 releases. I was so intrigued by the premise, even though it seemed like it would be romance heavy when there was obviously a lot of other stuff going on. However, I was pleasantly surprised that this one focused more on Lucille learning how to cope with raising her sister and being on her own than her relationship with Digby. And while the romance was there, it was nice that it wasn't the complete focus of the novel.
I was a little skeptical at first about the first person narrative because it seemed a little out of place, but once I got a little deeper into the story I realized that without being as deep inside Lucille's head as we were, we wouldn't have gotten the same emotional depth. Because it is so deeply inside Lucille's head and her point of view, I feel like that made the story that much better and worse: we knew exactly what her thoughts were on the situation but there wasn't the added benefit of knowing what Digby or Eden or even really Wren thought of what was happening. But I think Lucille was such a strong character that none of that really took away from my reading experience.
I liked that everyone in this book was selfish. Lucille wanted everyone to feel sympathetic for her but she didn't want to acknowledge that other people had problems as well; Eden wanted Lucille to just be her old self again without realizing that there was really no going back; Digby wanted the best of both worlds. But this is so true for real life. Sometimes we get so caught up in our own heads that we forget about other people and their problems. I would have liked to see more of a friendship develop between Lucille and Shane, that would have made the book just that much better.
The pacing was really good and I liked the chapter titles being Days After. That made it really easy to keep track of where the story was and what had previously happened. I also liked that depending on what was happening, Lucille had a memory of the past but it was always interrupted or finished by the characters saying "where are you in your head right now?" or something to that affect because it made it so realistic. You could really tell we were inside Lucille's head trying to process and figure stuff out.
I just really liked this one. And I highly recommend it because it isn't your typical coming of age story. Because it's not like Lucille is choosing between schools and what guy she wants to be with, she is trying to figure out how she will live the rest of her life and take care of her sister and I just have so many feelings and want to scoop both her and Wren up into a hug and just squish them with love.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
First Lucille's father gets locked up in a psychiatric facility after trying to kill her mother. Then her mother goes on "vacation." Now Lucille takes care of her little sister Wren and works nights so they have have food on the table. With a little help from her best friend Eden, and her twin Digby. That Lucille has lived Digby forever, and he has a long term girlfriend only complicates things even more.
THE RAGING LIGHT grabbed me from the beginning and I was immediately drawn into Lucille's plight. Having so much responsibility, especially for her nine-year-old sister, I understood why she forgot to be grateful for her friends' help. She felt authentic and complex in her imperfection. I loved Eden and Digby, despite wondering if a girl with so much pressure had an ounce of energy left to think about love. Lucille and Digby's relationship seemed more about interesting readers than realistic.
Estelle Laure gave Lucille an appropriate and engaging voice. I could have read THE RAGING LIGHT in one setting if time permitted. As the story progressed and more people learned of Lucille and Wren, I found the plot less probable. Someone would have reported two minors living alone. There's also another highly improbable situation that made the story feel less real.
The ending felt a bit corny, but I enjoyed the book enough to be happy there will be a sequel, which I will preorder.
THEMES: family, friendship, domestic violence, mental illness, romance
THE RAGING LIGHT tells the story of a teenager who becomes caretaker and provider for her little sister.
This Raging Light is a beautiful, heart-wrenching debut by Estelle Laure. I loved her voice and fell for both main characters, Lucille, and her little sister, Wren, hook, line, and sinker. Talk about good kids put in a horrible situation! Their dad goes crazy, their mom disappears, and Lucille is left to keep them both in school, stop everyone from finding out they're home alone, and find a way to support them.
The blurb really is the best summary without giving too much away, but I'd like to add that along with keeping "readers hooked and hoping until the very last page", Ms. Laure also gives you an intimate glimpse at young love, loss, and learning to deal with where loss leaves you. She shows how you never quite know who's going to step up to the plate and help out just when it's needed most, and that, sometimes, though the choices we're given in life aren't always ones we want to deal with, they are the choices that make us who we are.
I loved loved loved This Raging Light, and highly recommend it! Pre-order this one, guys. (Comes out right before Christmas.) You won't regret it!
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Lucille is one tough chick. She's abandoned by both her parents in a heartbeat and she automatically starts parenting her nine year old sister like a reflex.
This story is sweet and raw and beautiful, and I really enjoyed it.
Laurel writes with a lyrical style that I love...the right amount of dialogue, beautiful description, interior monologue and fantastic pacing.