Our silences are not silent, however, as most of the time when we travel we read with our ears. Sometimes we choose to listen to our own books and other times we choose to listen to a book together. A few weeks ago, while on the way to visit my mother, we decided we wanted to listen to the same book. The book we selected for our journey -- Jennifer Niven's All the Bright Places -- a book we had both picked up in the bookstore numerous times.
The story and the narrator sucked us in immediately, though we found the main character of Finch a bit disconcerting at first. As we listened, however, we began to love this tormented young man and his friend Violet, who had her own issues. When the climax of the novel came, we were devastated, even though we had predicted the outcome. My daughter's reaction was an anguished, "Why didn't someone, anyone, do SOMETHING?"
We spent the rest of our drive in quiet reflective conversation and have had many more conversations about this book and its very important subject since then. As we have discussed the book over the last few weeks, both my daughter and I have been changed by this story, these characters, and their message. We have set a goal to notice the little things, to appreciate the unusual in the world, and to always do "something."