The Big Crunch
Posted by: Gary Niebuhr
There is a theory that if the Big Bang sent all of the cosmos hurtling outward after some kind of massive eruption, it will all eventually fall back into itself in something called the Big Crunch.
The idea is explored by author Pete Hautman in his young adult novel, The Big Crunch. In this novel, Hautman tells the story of June Edberg, a high school girl who has been moved every six months to a year by her consultant father as he seeks jobs in different cities. Never being able to settle down has meant that June needs to change friends every time. Her father Elton tells her to forget the past and always move forward–a real Big Bang man.
When her family moves to Minnesota, June crosses paths with a young man named Wes Andrews. Wes’s world is turned upside down when he begins to fall in love with June and the consequences of his attempts to be worthy of her love will lead to a series of events that challenge his relationship with his existing friends and his family.
The book is told in the alternating chapters between the male and female perspective. The dialogue is very funny at times and the pace of the book is swift. To its credit, this novel can get the accolade sweet attached to it with none of the negative connotations this may carry.
I would recommend this to any young adult book discussion group simply because the characters are charming and the message is clear and positive. Our staff read this book for our monthly readers advisory training and it was well received by all but one (there is always one, isn’t there?).