Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Memoirs of an imaginary friend

While growing up, did you have an imaginary friend?  I don't remember one but perhaps it wasn't needed as I am the oldest of six children and I was only seven when my youngest sister was born.  There were always people around with whom to play and talk and create.

My only daughter, however, did have an imaginary friend.  Her name was Lucy and she became "real" for the entire family.  How could she not when you would find yourself shooed off a chair because Lucy was already sitting there?  Janae came after three brothers and the final brother didn't arrive until she was five, so perhaps she really needed an imaginary friend.  I certainly enjoyed hearing all about Lucy and her escapades.  Lucy remained a part of our conversations until the day that she arrived with all her cousins for Janae to babysit.  Janae described bunk beds similar to shoe boxes stacked the ceiling and way too much activity.  All those imaginary people soon exited Janae's room and moved to Europe, Lucy included.  I always loved that Lucy was named Lucy for that was the name of my beloved great grandmother.

"Memoirs of an imaginary friend" by Matthew Dicks is told from the point of view of an imaginary friend who has been created in the mind of an eight year old autistic boy named Max.  The reader soon learns that imaginary friends can see one another and that who they will see is what their friend has imagined them to be.  They are also limited by what their friend imagines that they can do.  Budo, Max's friend can walk through doors and is smart and imaginative himself.  Those qualities are important to the story, as they will allow Budo to save Max in the end.  The reader learns about real love (a man lays down his life for another) and real evil (manipulate others until you get what you want) while reading this engaging and truly imaginative story.

This is the author's third novel and he is a teacher so the school setting of most of this book feels natural and real (at least for this former teacher :)  The book has also been optioned for a movie and I hope that they do it right.  It would make a great movie.  Does anyone want to share anything about their imaginary friends?

1 comment:

Susan said...

I never had an imaginary friend, probably for the same reason you didn't (lots of siblings), but my brother had one named Super Deeda :)

This book sounds really interesting. I'm going to have to check it out. Thanks for the head's up!