Narfna told me to read this, so I did, and you should too. I blame the toddler for the fact that it took me three days to finish, because what I wanted to do was sit down and read straight through.
I hesitate to give away too much of the plot because it was a joy to go in knowing nothing. So how about just a tiny summary? Ada adores her father David, a single father who directs a computer science lab in 1980s-era Boston. When he begins to fade, she is compelled to a lifelong journey of discovery—about her father’s past and the future of his work.
This book is excellent for a lot of reasons, and I’m not going to enumerate them all, for fear of spoiling the most excellent ending. One of my favorite things about this book is how Moore so deftly describes the pangs of early teenagehood. For example, the pride Ada felt when she was allowed to take her father’s briefcase to school…and then the utter humiliation of realizing that all the other kids have backpacks…and then the even deeper humiliation of realizing that your dad knows you didn’t lose it, but that you left it because you were embarrassed by it—by him. As I was reading that it was like I was 12 again, shyly navigating the new social nuances of middle school.
The themes that Moore weaves together sound a bit trite when I write them out: family love, human failure, coming-of-age, discovering one’s past, etc. But the themes are so delicately written and the characters are so believable and lovely (SO lovely), it doesn’t read as trite in the least.
Rating: 5/5. I am still thinking about this book a week after reading it, and I will definitely be giving it as a gift in the future.