You Don't Think She Is by Max Harrick Shenk reveals a brilliantly composed coming of age novel. Brian Pressley’s world is memorialized within the contents of a toy chest. From the items in his pockets to the objects he wants to keep, they all find their way into his time capsule of memory. Some of the items within the chest are the cards, letters, and school notes he shared with his best friend, Margo LeDoux. Brian and Margo’s platonic relationship and deep friendship moves from building a fort together in the woods to having a middle school, slow dance where feelings begin to emerge. The question is why are the feelings pushed back safely beneath the surface of their mutual desire? The conflict pulls the reader in and doesn’t let go. As with most stories of young love, there is a third party involved. Christy Kelly is Brian’s school crush. She conveniently becomes friends with Margo. Even though Margo encourages the relationship, the reader is never sure who the third wheel is in this story of young love. The structure of the novel brings its own flavor. The short chapters speak volumes about the notion of first love, the workings of puberty, and the understanding of a blossoming sexuality. Another interesting facet to the structure is the letters and postcards filling the second half of the novel. They give the reader a keen insight into each of the character’s youthful thoughts and ideas. It is like entering the backdoor of someone’s home and being part of their intimate moments. Max Harrick Shenk’s book will take any reader back in time to their emotions and explorations during middle school. It is reminder of the innocence of youth and the burgeoning feelings of desire. Take the journey again. I am sure you will enjoy each memento he shares with you from the toy chest of memory.
You Don't Think She Is
Max Harrick Shenk, author
Three friends. Two girls. One guy. "Margo was my best friend. I felt like it had already been decided for us. I always knew where I stood with Margo. Christy (and other girls) somehow seemed to be hiding something, or making some joke I wasn't privy to, but when Margo said 'Hi,' I didn’t find myself wondering what she was really saying. "I liked Margo, and I trusted her. I didn’t know if I liked Christy. "I something’d Christy, but I had no idea what that 'something' was. "Yet." The prequel to the novel MEETING DENNIS WILSON, YOU DON'T THINK SHE IS tells the story of how Brian, Margo, and Christy became friends and something more... or less, depending on your perspective.
Kathy Buckert, author