Review: Kindness for Weakness


Title: Kindness for Weakness
Author: Shawn Goodman
Release Date: May 14, 2013
Pages: 261

First Line: “White-clad paramedics run alongside the gurney, guiding me through the electric gates of the facility and across the parking lot, where a helicopter awaits.”

“A fifteen-year-old boy from an abusive home desperately seeking his older brother’s love and approval starts pushing drugs for him and suffers the consequences.” – from

My thoughts: I don’t really know how to review this book. It’s not a genre I normally read. I really liked James, but the hopelessness of his situation was really depressing. It was almost a relief for him to be sent to a juvenile corrections facility. His mother is basically non-existent, his stepfather abusive, and his older brother, who for some reason James looks up to, is a total douche (excuse my language). James is hungry and tired, with no means of transportation aside from his worn-out shoes. Instead of helping him, his brother basically sets him up. At least when he’s in juvie, he’s getting food and sleep. But then that situation takes a much darker turn as well. Although there are a couple of well-meaning guards the boys interact with, most of them are cruel and ridiculous, making for a horribly vile environment. Shawn Goodman apparently has some direct experience with kids in juvenile detention, but I don’t know how realistic this book, and its heartbreaking ending, really is. I certainly hope the outcome wouldn’t be the same in the real world, but if Goodman’s intention is to bring attention to the hopelessness of some of these boys’ lives, then I think he did so. It scares me that boys like James could end up here.

My Ratings:
Writing: 3/5
Characters: 4/5
Subject: 3/5
Kept me interested: 3/5
Overall rating: 3/5


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Posted on July 1, 2013, in Reviews and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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