Author: Wendy Mass
Publisher: Little, Brown Young Readers
Publication Date: October 19, 2005
Everyone thinks I named my cat Mango because of his orange eyes, but that's not the case. I named him Mango because the sounds of his purrs and his wheezes and his meows are all various shades of yellow-orange...
Mia appears to be the most normal kid in her family. Her younger brother keeps a chart of all the hamburgers he's eaten. Her older sister dyes her hair a different color every week. But Mia knows she is far from ordinary. She is keeping something from everyone: sounds, numbers, and letters have color for her. When school trouble finally forces Mia to reveal her secret, she feels like a freak. She embarks on an intense journey of self-discovery, and by the time she realized she has isolated herself from everyone who cares about her, it's almost too late. She has to lose something very special in order to find herself.
Note: I borrowed A Mango-Shaped Space from a friend of mine. She said that it was really good. I wanted to see it for myself. She was right.
A Mango-Shaped Space is about thirteen-year-old Mia, having a rare condition called Synesthesia. This means that she sees letters, numbers, and words in color. This book is original. That's the best word to describe it. Before A Mango-Shaped Space, I've never heard about Synesthesia. This made me more aware of the fact that other kids or teenagers just like us, are having a difficult time because of this condition. After reading this, I became all the more thankful.
Mia was a compelling and admirable character. She was brave and naive but very mature for her age. If I had Synesthesia, I'd probably go crazy! Mia's family was one of the aspects of this book that made it special. They were all eccentric and nutty. I found her brother to be the wierdest of all though. I don't know anyone who makes Hamburgur charts. At one point, I truly felt sorry for Mia. Nobody understood her; not her friends, not her family-nobody. This frustrated me. In the real world, aren't people supposed to be more empathetic and more patient towards someone like Mia?
Mass completely captured a thirteen-year-old's point of view. Even though Mia was mature for her age, her youth still struck out every once in a while. That's what I admire most about Mass and her books. Mass's execution of the book was-in ONE word-flawless. I flew through the entire book. Never once did I get bored. Her writing flowed smoothly and effortlessly. Simple, and innocent.
The Bottom Line: Mass truly delivered on this one. A Mango-Shaped Space is a not-to-be-missed YA novel that would surely capture and move your hearts. A :-)
My reaction/enjoyment: 10/10
Total Score: 92/100 (A)