Published Date: Sun 01st May 2011
“From there my thoughts progressed to wondering what life would be like for a young homeless boy,” she said.
The protagonist, Skip, is a boy in survival mode during a war. He leaves school with minimum personal effects from his home and goes out into the streets, seeking to avoid death and hoping for a better life.
Shortly after Skip flees home and school, he meets Billy, a middle-age man. They form a friendship, eating and living together in an abandoned library. Unusual for a refugee of war, Skip still nurtures a dream of becoming an artist. This drive even makes him to steal books from the library...shortly before enemy soldiers bomb the building.
Skip and Billy’s journey lead them to meet companions like Max, a child looking for his mother. They also meet Red, a teenage mother with a sick baby. Between trying to find food for Red’s baby, avoiding soldiers, and looking for Max’s mother, the odd group try to learn from one another and survive, making use of what’s available to them.
The book, A Small Free Kiss in the Dark, tries to expose the difficulties of living through wartime, especially through a boy’s perspective. Much information is hidden regarding the nature of the war - sometimes we forget a war is going on, thinking Skip and his friends are just running away. However, the writer does a fine job of painting a picture of lack and the struggle for survival among war victims.
A Small Free Kiss in the Dark: Glenda Millard: Books