I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. If you buy the book using that link, I will receive a small commission from the sale.Save Me, Kurt Cobain by Jenny Manzer
Published by Random House Children's Books on March 8, 2016
Genres: Emotions & Feelings, Family & Relationships, Teen, Thriller & Suspense, Young Adult
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What if you discovered that Kurt Cobain was not only alive, but might be your real father? This nuanced and bittersweet YA debut will keep you guessing until the end.
Nico Cavan has been adrift since her mother vanished when she was four--maternal abandonment isn't exactly something you can just get over. Staying invisible at school is how she copes--that and listening to alt music and summoning spirits on the Ouija board with her best friend and coconspirator in sarcasm, Obe. But when a chance discovery opens a window onto her mom's wild past, it sparks an idea in her brain that takes hold and won't let go.
On a ferry departing Seattle, Nico encounters a slight blond guy with piercing blue eyes wearing a hooded jacket. Something in her heart tells her that this feeling she has might actually be the truth, so she follows him to a remote cabin in the Pacific Northwest. When she is stranded there by a winter storm, fear and darkness collide, and the only one who can save Nico might just be herself.
When Nevermind released in 1991 I was in 8th grade. I remember seeing the cover of the cassette tape with the swimming baby and being intrigued. The album opened my 13-year-old mind to new ideas and sounds. I remember the “cool” P.E. teacher letting us play the tape on Friday Free Days. Nirvana and by association, Kurt Cobain, helped shape my musical taste for years to come. So when I saw the title of this book, Save Me, Kurt Cobain, I knew I had to read it. Nico has been motherless since she was 4-years-old, when her mother walked out one day and never came back. Now, at 15, Nico is trying to understand why, and who her mother really was. She finds a box that leads her on a path. A path to a slight man with blue eyes, who may just be the key to everything.
Jenny Manzer has an interesting writing style. Less focused on outside details and more centered on emotions, this was just my type of book. As you know I hate to be bogged down in details, and Save Me, Kurt Cobain had enough to keep it moving but not too many to drag it down. The feelings jumped off of the page and helped bolster the characters who, at times, were self-centered and short sighted. The pacing kept a nice clip and I loved how the last part unfolded so seamlessly. And the world Manzer created was just perfect. I could remember how I felt listening to that music for the first time, and she tapped into that and crafted a very real experience.
I am unsure exactly why this is listed under Thrillers & Suspense, as this was a coming of age story full of feels, not a tense read. But aside from that small quibble, I really enjoyed Save Me, Kurt Cobain. It brought back memories of a time of intense growth in my life. I know this is marketed to teens, but I believe a large contingent of 90’s kids will enjoy reading this. Save Me, Kurt Cobain is a quirky read with a lot of heart and Manzer has a great deal of talent. I highly recommend this read and will be sure to read Jenny Manzer’s next book.
Favorite lines – I thought this: I could not take one more. I had been waiting for something, someone, to help me, and no one had. I was done. A yellow school bus soars off an icy road; divers search a lake for bodies; legs are crushed; a brain is dead. Sometimes the worst has happened. Sometimes done is done.
Biggest cliché – You have loved and cared for me my whole life, so I must treat you like crap.
Have you read Save Me, Kurt Cobain, or added it to your TBR?
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2016 Debut Author Challenge
- 2016 New Release Challenge
- Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge
- The Goodreads Challenge