Monday, June 22, 2009

Blood Brothers S.A. Harazin

Blood Brothers by S A Harazin This cover made me want to read the back flap. I quickly decided I was going to read Blood Brothers , the Gail Giles blurb on the front didn't hurt. I wasn't disappointed. The novel is set in a small unnamed Georgia town. 17 yr old Clay Gardener is a level 1 med tech at the local hospital. There isn't much money in it but he wants to be a doctor, and he likes the experience. Clay's only friend is Joey Chancey. The two met years earlier when the Gardener's arrived at the Chancey's doorstep on Christmas Eve. Blood Brothers opens, with Clay working a shift at the hospital. The day before Clay had an agrument with Joey. After Clay watches a teenage girl die in the E.R., he decides his fight with Joey is trivial. He goes to Joey's house right from work. Clay good intentions are forgotten, he must defend himself against a crazed Joey. The two have claimed the Chancey shed as their own. On that night its trashed, Joey's naked, and attacks Clay with a hoe. In self defense Clay knocks Joey to the ground. Clay's worried his hit is responsible for landing his best friend in the intensive care unit. To clear his name and find out what really happened, Clay retraces Joey's steps. Harazin's created a great three dimensional character in Clay. From the first chapter we get a sense of who he is, it continues throughout the novel. Unlike all the other teens including Joey, Clay is not rich. He didn't get a car for graduation.
"Joey was class valedictorian. He was voted most likely to succeed. I was voted the most likely to pedal a bike the rest of my life. There's a picture in the yearbook of me on my bike next to the cafeteria Dumpster with the caption twenty years from now. "
The author's background in nursing adds to the realism to the hospital scenes.
"Clay! Take over compressions." I put on a face shield and move to the side of the gurney. The other EMT steps out of the way. I position my hands in the right spot and press. This is not the plastic dummy I practiced on when I was getting certified. This is a real person. Not too hard. Press down an inch. Don't break the ribs. I count. I'm shaking, sweating, gasping. A properly trained person can do effective CPR. You don't have to be a doctor. Any CPR is better than none. "

Author uses medial jargon that doesn't seemed forced or out of place. The story away from the hospital is as strong. Clay's imperfections and uncertainties make him that much more real. Harazin's writing is smooth, she does an excellent slow reveal of what really happened to Joey. Ages 13up

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