Glimpse by Carol Lynch Williams

Even though Hope and Lizzie were a year apart in age, they had been best friends ever since they could remember. When little sister Hope walks in on Lizzie, fourteen years old, about to shoot herself with a shotgun, her heart  “pounds so much that it hurts.”

“She fingers the


Looks up.

My sister.

My sister just looks

up at me.


the trigger

of that gun.”

Hope can’t understand what could be so terrible that her Lizzie would want to end her life.  She goes back to beginning to start her story, when their father was killed on his motorcycle while out getting medicine. The readers see glimpses of the past, while living in the difficult present time with Hope.  Lizzie is put in a mental hospital for treatment, and Hope must contend with their abusive mother alone, an unscrupulous and exploitative woman who turned to prostitution years ago as means to support her daughters.  The mental hospital’s psychiatrist believes something has happened recently to change Lizzie’s behavior, and the reader learns along with Hope what has happened with Lizzie and how she can “save” her.

I highly recommend this book to fans of realistic teen fiction and  fans of Ellen Hopkins.  You will find it hard to put down once you get started!


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