Running Barefoot - Amy Harmon ★★★★★

At age nine, Josie has no other choice but to become an adult and takes care of her family. Her mother just died and she has to help her dad and brothers by doing housework, cooking, and balancing the checkboo...all still while going to school and learning to play the piano like the great pianists of all time. By age 13, she thought of herself as a loner and didn't really mesh well with others her age. After the bus driver creates a seating chart, she gets paired up with 18 year Samuel who is part Native American and very disgruntled. After riding the bus 40 minutes every day to and from school they discuss everything and anything like Beethoven and Navajos, Wuthering Heights and the Marines. Jose and Samuel became friends and it’s not till later that they realized how much their friendship means to one another. By the end of the school year, Samuel goes off to join the Marines and it leaves Josie heartbroken. She eventually moves on and no longer dwells on losing her once best friend. A few unfortunate events take place and Josie is again left heartbroken and alone. It’s not until a decade later; Samuel comes back into Josie’s world and repays the favor of showing her what it is like to feel again.

Running Barefoot by Amy Harmon was surprisingly a good book. As I read the first few pages I wasn't entirely sure I would like it. Once I finished the first chapter, I became hooked. I stayed up till 1 am one night and read 70% of the book. Once I finished it that next morning I was sad it was over.  I can’t' really explain why I was interested in this book so much. Maybe it was because it reminded me of something that would be on the Lifetime Movie network (Come on! We all LOVE the movies on lifetime!! Admit it!). It was compelling and at each chapter end, you wanted to find out how the next chapter started. Running Barefoot is a wonderfully written coming of age story, not for just one person of the story but for two, very similar but all very unique in their own way, charactors. Five stars to Amy Harmon on a job well done.

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