A young boy is assigned by his scoutmaster to help an elderly woman out around her house and attain his scouting badge. She is 104 years old and quite literally alone in the world. The boy, who is obsessed with Guinness Book of World Records, sets the woman on a path to become the oldest something. He is also interviewing her for a school project. This quirky, brilliant boy who has enormous difficulty connecting to others has instant chemistry with Ona. A beautiful and unlikely friendship blooms. When the boy suddenly dies his neglectful musician Dad shows up to fulfill the rest of the boys badge requirements. The mother, who has all but fallen apart from this tragedy pushes the estranged Dad to examine his own life and grief. While the writing is both beautiful and style completely unique, I had a lot of trouble connecting with any of these characters. I truly like the premise but often lost myself in repetition and unnecessary dialogue. I’m kind of on the fence with this one folks! Will be interesting to discuss with my book club tomorrow. Sometimes the discussion brings to light a new perspective that may shine on the missing elements.
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