The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley by Shaun David Hutchinson

Hello fellas and lady fellas, The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley is a heartbreaking novel about a 17 year old boy, Andrew, and his journey through the weeks following a tragic accident he believes is his fault.  Andrew has lived in an abandoned part of the Roanoke General Hospital since the day of the horrible accident. As a boy gets rushed in the hospital surrounded by a dozen nurses and doctors, Andrew can’t help but feel like he should be friends with the kid that was set on fire at a party for being gay. The boy’s monstrous howls of agony fill the emergency room as  Andrew feels like everybody deserves something to live for, especially his burned boy. Andrew takes a liking to sneaking into his burned boy’s ICU room to hold hands and read him his Patient F comics and other books. Andrew and his burned boy, Rusty McHale, end up having a very special friendship which eventually leads to something more.

Drew (Andrew), has many friends around the hospital, including three ER nurses, Emma, Jo, and Steven. He also befriends two cancer victims who are his age, Lexi and Trevor, who are with him through everything. Drew even has a relationship with an elderly women in a coma who he likes to call Gran. She’s the best secret keeper Drew has. He tells her about the comic he’s writing about: Patient F, he tells her how sick Trevor is, how much he likes Rusty, that Death wears a pencil skirt and stockings, and how much he doesn’t like Death; he hates her. Father Mike (the priest that Andrew sometimes talks to) likes to tell Drew how everything will be all right and that Patient F needs something to love in order to be a superhero, even though Drew knows what utter horse crap that is.

Death is Andrew’s worse fear. She goes by the name Miss Michelle and wears beautiful skirts and flowy shirts that are pretty. She has long dark legs and Andrew hates her so badly. He is convinced that wherever that evil social worker goes, death follows. So he started calling her Death. Andrew believes that Death forgot to take him the night of the accident when his whole life collapsed and he watched his family die. He doesn’t want Death to take Rusty, Lexi, or Trevor. He doesn’t want Death to take him or anyone he loves. But how can he save his friends even with the help of Father Mike and his boss at the cafeteria, Arnold, when Death has him on her list?

I give this book five stars, it was amazing and sad and beautiful at the same time. You should definitely read it, my lovely little angels.

~~Cassandra Grace


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