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Thirteen-year-old Natalie Gallagher is trying to escape: from her parents' ugly divorce, and from the vicious cyber-bullying of her former best friend. She discovers a dusty old diary in her family's basement and is inspired to unlock its secrets.
Kathleen Lynch, an archivist at the Massachusetts State Archives, has her own painful secrets: she's a widow estranged from her only daughter. Natalie's research brings her to Kathleen, who in Natalie sees traces of the daughter she has lost.
What could the life of an Irish immigrant domestic servant from the 1920s teach them both? In the pages of the diary, they will learn that their fears and frustrations are timeless.
So Far Away is an affecting story of mothers and daughters and how solace can be found in the most unlikely places.
I'm officially a fan of Meg Mitchell Moore. She weaves tales that put you on the emotional roller coaster with her vivid characters.
There are lots of people in this story, but only two main characters whose perspectives we get. As the synopsis states, Nat is a very sad character, getting bullied (not just cyber) while her parents are going through a divorce. Kathleen has been a widower for many years. Her young adult daughter has been missing for a few years, since she ran away. Kathleen is a very sad character as well. She really wants to help Natalie; to have a second chance to do the right thing.
The cyber aspect makes bullying so much worse than when we were kids. I could have screamed when her mother found out about it and her solution? Taking Nat's phone and computer away. Way to punish the victim, MOM!
How does this resolve itself? You'll have to read. I will say I think Meg does a great job keeping her stories realistic.