I think what I really enjoyed about Home and Away was how Montgomery deals with family. As someone who is adopted, family and ‘blood’ family has meant a lot to me. Not in the traditional sense. But I’ve always had questions upon questions. Unanswered.
Tasia Quirk is young, Black, and fabulous. She’s a senior, she’s got great friends, and a supportive and wealthy family. She even plays football as the only girl on her private high school’s team.
But when she catches her mamma trying to stuff a mysterious box in the closet, her identity is suddenly called into question. Now Tasia’s determined to unravel the lies that have overtaken her life. Along the way, she discovers what family and forgiveness really mean, and that her answers don’t come without a fee. An artsy bisexual boy from the Valley could help her find them—but only if she stops fighting who she is, beyond the color of her skin.
Home and Away is a book that rocks you to the core. It’s a book that has constant reveals that make you gasp aloud. Or is that just me? It’s a book that asks us questions about family. Everything from can we forgive our family – to what happens when our family isn’t who they say they are? Tasia’s world turns on edge, over the edge, and sideways. Nothing is the same and to the world, it looks the same.
It’s like when you see someone differently, because you know something about them. And you see them in a new light. But the rest of the world goes on turning. They don’t see anything else wrong. Or different. But it is. And that’s one of the reasons why I so greatly enjoyed this book.
It makes us see what we love about our family. And the things we take for granted. All of these ideas about family are challenged and explored.
(Our MC is bi-racial, suffers anxiety attacks, and our love interest is bisexual and was in the foster care system/adopted – just in case people were wondering what the diversity is like. I felt like there were fabulous conversations between Tasia and one of her black friends about specific issues (i.e. hair) that were great to see as Tasia is exploring her identity. We’ve also got characters who suffer from lupus and depression. So I was loving the diversity here!).
But what also touched my heart was Tasia’s journey about forgiveness. She has to realize, like all of us, that forgiveness isn’t about the other person. It’s about us. It’s a gift to ourselves where we can let go of the resentment. Often times we think other people need our forgiveness, but they live their lives fine without it. It’s us who need it.