Less Than Nothing
by RE Blake
This is a story of life and what it takes to survive it.
Within the YA genre I have to say that this was far from average and being able to say that means that I am absolutely delighted.
The story is evolutionary and will stay with you as you close the last page.
Sage has had a far from easy life, one that has left her not only existing through untold tragedies but having to make choices that were far from what she would have ideally liked in order to exist from day to day.
Living life on the street after escaping a home life that was too much for her to take for another day. Sage’s life is the epitome of hardship, living on the fringes of society and reliant completely on her street smarts and wits to keep her not only fed but safe from the predators that feed on the vulnerable on the streets.
One rule on the street is that you keep your pitch and when another teenager Derek encroaches on her turf, Sage is forced to stand up for herself. She might not be fighting to keep a roof over her head but it is much the same principle.
Derek, is not the type of person she ever thought she might come across and after the initial confrontation over location, he captivates her attention in more ways than one, because he was not only blisteringly hot to look at but he had what appealed to her most, musical talent and his talent blew her away.
Between them they knew that they could make beautiful music together and pretty soon they were on the road, hitch hiking their way across the country, living their own variation of a dream that street smart Derek had long hoped for and one which Sage never fully knew that she could aspire too.
Together their trip opens the big wide world to them both and shows that you have to rely on other in order to be able to rely on yourself. By accepting help they could plan a future for themselves, one that they both deserved. But that is not to say that the trip is easy sailing, far from it but I felt that the events that they encounter all added to the reality of the story.
I mean when you are on the streets, you are sometimes invisible to the rest of society, you have little option but to fight to survive and protect not only you but those you care about.
The book gloriously lifted the lid on a much hidden taboo, it gave us a much needed look into the drama that surrounds youngsters who feel disengaged with either home or society and are forced to live on the peripheries of what the rest of us take for granted.
I loved the fact that Sage was feisty but I also liked the fact that her life was not portrayed as a complete lost cause, this was not a woe is me story, it is uplifting in many ways. It is littered with humour and sensitivity.
Sage and Derek have an unusual dynamic, one that works for them but one that is tailored to their situation. Sage relies on Derek but there is occasion when her youth and naiveté is both presumptuous and insensitive.
I am looking forward to the rest of the books in the series and to see where Sage and Derek’s story takes them.
I hope they each get a happy ever after, whether that will be together or not we have yet to see, and to be honest I would not mind either way, I just want to know that they are able to achieve the goals they have set for themselves and perhaps if not a relationship between them, they will have forged a lifelong friendship.