Uses for Boys by Erica Lorraine Scheidt
This is a downer of a book. Not really happy endings or happy people to be found in this read. Also, it’s not that well written. Which may be on purpose for authenticity or maybe not. But the story is very real, raw and relatable. To set the stage, the main character’s mother is constantly uprooting their lives in search of her next husband, while ignoring her daughter and leaving her to scramble for identity. Entering new schools as an uncared for girl, she never really makes friends and instead enters into sexual relationships with boys to try and meet her need for connection. Along the way she works at asserting her independence and is able to separate from her unresponsive mom. But life never really gets easier.
I read the book, but I didn’t really enjoy it. I don’t know that it was meant to be enjoyed. It is a work of fiction but I think it could easily be a true story, and so it may inspire compassion. Many people struggle and we don’t always know what their lives have been like. They may not have been very easy. Reading this story is a good reminder not to judge people or assume that we know why they made the life choices that they did.
Review by Sarah Rosenkrantz