The Voice in My Head

384p. Inkyard. May 2019. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781335008497.
Gr 9 Up—Davis's second YA novel set in Seattle follows 18-year-old black twins Indigo and Violet and their chaotic family on an unlikely road trip. While attempting suicide, Indigo hears a voice say that her terminally ill twin Violet will live if she hikes the Wave, a 2.5-mile scenic rock formation in the Arizona desert. Unsure whether the voice is God or a symptom of a concussion, Indigo bravely pleads with her family before plans for Violet's medically assisted death unfold. Thanks to a resourceful pastor, Jedidiah, everything falls in place allowing the family to set off in a rainbow-colored paratransport bus covered in eyeballs. Jedediah, the twins, their retired parents, 16-year-old brother Alfred, and 33-year-old sister Michelle, as well as Michelle's husband and biracial children, are a motley group of passengers, seeking healing for Violet's pulmonary fibrosis. From kidney stones to an attempted robbery with a paintball gun, there is never a dull moment for the Phillips family. Indigo's perspective on herself and her family changes along the way, giving her acceptance and hope. The writing is refreshing and the characters relatable. Though the novel tackles the heavy subject matter of terminal illness, mental health, and death, lighthearted, comical scenes make for a heartfelt, entertaining read.
VERDICT Readers of realistic fiction will enjoy the sibling banter, unique characters, and authentic dialogue.

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