River City Reading

Helping readers of literary, contemporary and historical fiction find their next great book.
Late Lights - Kara Weiss Monty, Erin and B.J. have been friends since they were young, but their relationships begin to strain as teenagers when both their choices and circumstances cause their lives to diverge. Following time in juvenile detention, Monty must adapt to life at home with a less than present father. Erin, both Monty and B.J's rock, has chosen to go to boarding school and leave her family behind while B.J. is attempting to figure out her true identity. Though the friends feel like they are growing apart, the stories in Late Lights show just how connected they are.

In progressive chapters, almost linked short stories, Weiss pieces together the lives of Monty, Erin and B.J, gradually exposing the details of their histories. Late Lights starts with Monty's stay in juvenile detention, which is hauntingly accurate, and seamlessly weaves into B.J.'s struggle with gender identity. Bouncing back, Weiss examines Erin's decision to leave for boarding school, followed by Monty's first days at home - connecting the characters to one another at each point.

In 123 pages, Weiss is able to develop her characters more than some authors can in 400. Late Lights is a gorgeous example of the powerful storytelling that can be packed into the limited space of a novella and Kara Weiss is certainly one to watch.

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