Review: Glimpse by Carol Lynch Williams

Title: Glimpse
Author: Carol Lynch Williams
Publisher: Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
Pub. Date: 6.22.10
Genre: Contemporary YA
Keywords: Suicide, Abuse, Sisters, Friendship, Blank Verse
Pages: 496
Description (from Amazon):

In one moment
it is over.
In one moment
it is gone.
The morning grows
thin, grey
and our lives-
how they were-
have vanished.
Our lives have
changed
when I walk in
on Lizzie
my sister
holding a shotgun.

Twelve year old girl Hope’s life is turned upside down when her older sister Lizzie becomes an elective mute and is institutionalized after trying to kill herself.
**This is not the full Amazon description. I have had an impossible time finding a good description of GLIMPSE – one told the entire plot and the other told aboslutely nothing. I urge you NOT to read the full Amazon description as it is quite possibly the worst novel spoiler I have ever seen!

It isn’t often that I am so emotionally overwhelmed by a novel that I want to simultaneously hug it to my chest and throw it across the room. I was riveted by Hope and Lizzie’s heartrending story and, even though it was difficult to read, I found that I was unable to tear my eyes from the pages.


I found it hard to determine if it was the book’s content or the age of the narrator that called to my protective side, but it was there in full force. Williams’ depiction was so vivid that I found myself completely invested in the characters, which caused many frustrated tears. I wanted to protect Hope and Lizzie from their awful, selfish mother and prevent the tragic events that I felt were sure to unfold.


I haven’t read very many books written in verse, but, after GLIMPSE, I may have to. Williams’ writing had a much more powerful impact written in blank verse than it would have in any other format. I’m astounded by how the deletion of superfluous words can hone text into a dangerous weapon that cuts straight to the reader’s heart.


GLIMPSE is left me swollen-eyed and emotionally drained, but in no way regretting my soggy state. It’s often the difficult reads that leave a permanent mark, opening the reader’s eyes to an issue or situation that they’d rather avoid. My eyes are officially open. 

Grade: A


Cover Notes:
It fits the novel perfectly. It makes me teary-eyed just looking at it.

Buy It!
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8 thoughts on “Review: Glimpse by Carol Lynch Williams

  1. Aww amazing review! I loved how much it effected you. I really love books written in verse, and I loved The Chosen One by her, so I'm sure this one is just as good. Usually the books hardest to read are the best (:

  2. Excellent review! I am so looking forward to this one after reading The Chosen One last year and loving it. Also, thanks for the warning about Amazon. I hate when they do that!

  3. I love novels in verse and I think I want them all! I hadn't found any reviews on this book and then Lori sent me the link here (I think I already follow you, though I'll double check) because you had a great review for it. You make me want to hit the order button right now! This book will be perfect for the Read A Thon, though I'm reading so many emotional books I'll likely be a wreck by the end! Thanks for a great review without any spoilers!

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