You know when the worst possible moment to start falling in love is? At about the same time that your mom skips out of town with no sign of returning, when your dad is taken away after he has a mental breakdown in front of your family, and you’re left with your younger sister and a slew of household duties to take care of. That’s exactly what 17-year-old Lucille is facing in Estelle Laure’s new novel, This Raging Light.

When we first meet Lucille, she has high hopes that her mother is only going on a short vacation to clear her head after the family’s very public drama is the talk of the town. But after a few days home with her 9-year-old sister Wren, it becomes very clear that there’s no sign of her mother returning, and she has to fend for herself. Lucille doesn’t want anyone to know that she’s caring for her sister on her own, especially since she’s under 18 and doesn’t want child services to get involved and separate them.

Lucille relies on the help of her best friend Eden and Eden’s twin brother Digby to help out with babysitting as she tries to get a job, keep the household afloat, and try not to completely flunk out of school in the meantime. But suddenly Lucille finds that she’s crushing on Digby, a guy she’s known since childhood and now can’t stop thinking about. She knows there’s no use in getting involved – he has a long term girlfriend he’s totally smitten with, plus, she needs to be focusing on digging her family out of their difficult times. Still, you can’t choose who you fall in love with and when it will happen, and things get complicated.

As we learn more about Lucille and learn more about when her family life first started to crumble, we’re hit with so many plot twists and shocking revelations that it’s hard to keep up. You’ll want to devour this whole book in one sitting so you’re not left with any cliffhangers or suspense – and you’ll be rooting for Lucille the whole time.

Written by Kristine Hope Kowalski

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