Much more than just ripped from the headlines

Summary:

It may be Christmas, but there is little to celebrate for teenager Aidan Donovan. His family is crumbling: his father has left and his mother can only do so much. Aiden feels that the only person he can turn to is Father Greg, his local priest. However, once he sees Father Greg’s darker intentions with boys like him, Aiden feels his world is falling apart around him. He turns to a small group of friends: Sophie, the wild girl; Josie, the girl he is falling in love with; and Mark, the boy who has secrets of his own to deal with. This trio stands by him and helps Aiden make sense of his life. 


BTSYA / Teen Reader (15):
Kiely’s debut novel had me rushing to finish it, but also stopping and pondering the characters in this story and from the real world. The Gospel of Winter dives into the world where pastors and church leaders abuse their boys, as we have seen far too often before. This is easily my favorite book written by Kiely.

NOTE: Despite being an upper-elementary reading level, this is a YOUNG ADULT book with mature themes.


Reader Enjoyment Factors:

Powerful, personal, and very real. Aiden's story sparks a range of emotions from anger to empathy and love. 

Content Awareness Factors:

This is a story about a teen's struggle with abuse and drug use. It has sexual content and language that is not suited for children.


Type of Book:
This is a young adult novel about love, truth, and facing your demons.
Educational Themes:

As our teen suggests, this is a ripped-from-the-headlines type story that will make the news more "real" for teens. Aiden is someone they will see as a classmate or friend. Topics for discussion include healthy ways to deal with crises (e.g, Aiden starts drinking and over-using his meds), identifying predatory behavior, friendship, and the two sides of love.

Reading Level:
4.9
Recommended Age To Read By Yourself:
15 and Up
Recommended Age To Read Together:
13 and Up
Age of child:
Teen STAR Review Team, Be the Star You Are!™ . Reviewer age: 15
Purchase Recommendation:
Borrow, at least. This is a powerful story. If you like Kiely's writing, you may want this on your shelf to read again.

Title The Gospel of Winter
Author Brendan Kiely
Publisher Margaret K. McElderry Books, Imprint Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing © 2015
ISBN 9781442484900
Material Paperback
Cost $11.99
be the star you are
Other Reviews:

More Reviews

Here are some other books we have reviewed that you may like!

BOOK REVIEW

Author
Cheryl Rainfield
ISBN
9781934813324

BOOK REVIEW

Author
Liza Wiemer
ISBN
9781633920491

BOOK REVIEW

Author
Jolene Perry
Publisher
Albert Whitman & Company © 2015
ISBN
9780807531587

BOOK REVIEW

Author
Colleen Hoover
Publisher
Atria Books, Imprint Simon & Schuster © 2016
ISBN
9781501110368
be the star you are

BOOK REVIEW

Author
Andrea Portes
Publisher
HarperTeen, Imprint HarperCollins Publishers © 2014
ISBN
9780062313645