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The Impossible Knife of Memory. Tracy Barrett. The Stepsister's Tale. Brandy Colbert. Pointe. Beth Fantaskey. Buzz Kill. Alison Marie Behnke. Up for Sale. Editorial Reviews. From School Library Journal. Gr 9 Up—Hayley is the daughter of a veteran, The Impossible Knife of Memory by [Anderson, Laurie Halse]. The Impossible Knife of Memory. For the past five years, Hayley Kincaid and her father, Andy, have been on the road, never staying long in one place as he.

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For the past five years Hayley Kincain and her father, Andy, have been on the road, never staying long in one place as he struggles to escape the demons that . The Impossible Knife of Memory is both moving and compelling. ABOUT THE AUTHOR. Laurie Halse Anderson was born, and still lives, in. Northern New York . For the past five years, Hayley Kincaid and her father, Andy, have been on the road, never staying long in one place as he struggles to escape the demons.

Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book.

My father, uncles, and many of his friends fought in the Vietnam war. He still wakes up in the middle of the night from his nightmares.

He's the tall, gawky one. The camera awkwardness is genetic. Thanks, dad.

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My father has seen friends killed in combat. He himself has killed enemy soldiers. He's buried his brother in law, he's seen his beloved older sister commit suicide because she couldn't live without her soldier husband.

This is a very personal subject for me, and that is why I read this book. I wanted this book to make me feel emotionally broken. I wanted so badly to love the main character, to sympathize with her. To an extent I do, her situation is extremely grave, and it left me feeling very worried for her at times, but I just couldn't relate to her.

The book did not make my heart ache for a single beat. I never felt the slightest tingle of tears behind my eyes. It did not left me broken in the least. No, this is not a bad book, but it did not emotionally connect with me. Hailey is our main character.

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She is a surly, sullen teenager. She hates everyone, everything. She is the trope of an angry teenager, and while it is understandable, it doesn't really make her a character that I like. For an overwhelming part of the book, I had an intense dislike of Hailey.

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I know that teenagers are not perfect. I know that they need time to mature. Trust me, I was your stereotypical teenager myself, but that doesn't mean you would like me when you met me, and it doesn't mean that I like the character that Hailey is, within this book.

I understand that not all characters are likeable, but they need to be sympathetic. For someone whose home situation is so grave, I could not find within myself the sympathy I should have had for Hailey, due to the overwhelming amount of apathy that is her personality.

Hailey puts all her peers into two categories. She is terribly closed-minded. She labels people. Everyone is either a freak or a zombie.

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There are two kinds of people in this world: 1. Only two. Anyone who tells you different is lying. That person is a lying zombie. Do not listen to zombies. Run for your freaking life. Another lesson: everyone is born a freak.

She hates authority figure. All adults are out to get her. Hailey flaunts the rules. She rebels in the dumbest ways.

All of my answers were drawings of armored unicorns. I drew a bomb attached to a ticking clock under one of the unicorns. I found it so hard to get into the book, because so much of the book felt like Hailey's character was an overinflation of an angry teenaged character with whom we were supposed to relate, with whom we were supposed to sympathize, if not like.

We are supposed to gradually fall in love with Hailey. I never got past the "hate" stage myself. Part of the reason why she's so angry is because her situation at home is far less than ideal. Actually, it's sort of a blind date. You're only, what? I followed him past the giggling children rolling down the hills like sausages. Past their tired parents sitting on stained comforters with their arms around each other.

Past people critiquing the performance of the band and the flag twirlers. We walked all the way to the top of the hill and into the shadows beyond the reach of the stadium lights.

We sat on the blanket, the cheeseburgers, fries, and flowers a border between us, watching the little kids and the band until halftime was over. It was marginally less awkward when the game started again, if only because there was so much to mock. Finally, the ref blew his whistle and it was official. The Belmont Machinists had lost their sixth game of the season and I had no idea what would happen next. I didn't know what I wanted to happen next. The stadium slowly emptied; the families on the hill gathered their kids and shepherded them toward the parking lot, and soon we were the only ones left.

I'm pretty sure we're far enough away that he won't be able to see us, but we should lie down for ten minutes or so, to be safe. I swear. I'll move over here so you're comfortable.

I lay down on the blanket carefully, keeping my head turned and my eyes open so I could watch him. The lights in the stadium started to click off, one at a time, until darkness took over the field.

The last of the cars pulled out of the parking lot, tires squealing. The chatter of the security guard's radio moved along the hill below us like a stray breeze. As it faded, I sat up and watched his flashlight bob into the distance. A few minutes later, the guard reached his car and slowly drove away, tires crunching over the gravel.

Talking, talking, talking, okay? Eyes closed? You're lying down? I'm still talking and I am looking for something to talk about but it's tough because this is a bizarre situation. Somehow I failed to anticipate that your response to my well-thought-out date would be to threaten me with violence. I should have been prepared for that.

The next time I'm in a meeting with MI5—". The night sky stretched on forever above me, the stars flung like glass beads and pearls on a black velvet cloak. Can I sit on the blanket now?

Had there always been this many stars in the sky? Of course, if you wanted to try anything, I'd be a very willing participant. Do you want to try anything? It's still an anti-date. You can come back if you want. I watched out of the corner of my eye as Finn's shape stood, walked over, and lay down two inches away from me. I could feel the heat radiating off his skin. He smelled of wet grass and sweat and soap.

No body spray.

I expected him to keep talking, to ramble on about the stars or his adventures as an astronaut or the time he was abducted by aliens which I might have believed , but he just lay there, staring at the corner of the Milky Way that was smeared right above us. The layers of noise—cars on the road, distant airplanes, the farewells of crickets, the flutter of bat wings—all faded until I could hear only the sound of my heart beating in my ears, and the slow, steady rhythm of Finn's breath.

We left about an hour later so that Finn could drive me home and get back to his house before curfew. Neither one of us had much to say.

We didn't talk in the car, either, but that was easier because he turned on the radio. It felt like the time under the stars had delivered us to a new country that we didn't have the language for yet, but I didn't know what it felt like for him because I didn't have the guts to ask.

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They're headed up to the Adirondacks tomorrow. I unbuckled my seat belt and opened my door the instant he shut the engine off because I didn't know what I wanted to happen in the front seat. Well, I kind of knew, but I wasn't percent sure, and it seemed like the safest course of action was to get my bike out of the backseat as soon as possible.

The handlebars got caught on the coat hook above the back door, but Finn reached in and unhooked them. He tossed his keys up and down. You just took out the captain's daughter without his permission. Dad was sitting by the bonfire in the backyard with Roy and a bunch of the others.

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The conversation died when I stepped into the circle of light. I wanted to sit on the ground next to him and lean against his knee and have him smooth my hair back and tell me that everything was going to be all right, but the awful thing was, I wasn't sure it could be. He was sober, still drinking soda, surrounded by guys who understood everything he'd been through, but his good mood of the afternoon had vanished. He looked lost again, haunted.

One of the younger soldiers got up and offered me a chair, but I muttered a quick g'night, and hurried inside. Michael was parked in front of the television gaming with a couple of the privates, dribbling chew-stained spit into a paper cup. I went straight to my room without saying a word.

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Didn't bother with a shower or brushing my teeth. I locked my bedroom door, changed into my pj's, and crawled into bed with a book and my phone. I waited, staring at the screen.