Ask the Passengers by A.S. King
Reviewed By: S.F.
Every time a passenger plane passes overhead, Astrid Jones takes a deep breath, asks the passengers a question about her own life, and sends her love to the people on board. Astrid attends a school more interested in appearing tolerant than fostering dialogue, ignores her own complicated personal life, and has silent conversations with the ghost of Socrates, her hero. Her mother has turned into an agoraphobic gossip queen, her father won't engage, and her younger sister has become a stranger. Some days, Astrid feels like she lives for her Saturday morning work shifts, where she can be herself for five minutes at a time in the freezer next to packages of frozen shrimp. When Astrid's private life becomes public discussion, she's forced to ask herself (instead of the passengers) who it is that she wants to be.
Why I Picked it Up: This book was on a list of "must read" books I saw on the Internet.
Why I Finished It: I wanted to know what would happen! Astrid's voice is great, and she tries to figure herself out on her own terms instead of letting other people tell her who she is. I also loved the idea of sending anonymous people love, and I kind of want Frank Socrates as my imaginary friend (even if he won't answer any questions).
I’d Give this Book To: Probably fans of John Green -- Astrid is a genuine, often intelligently sarcastic narrator asking questions about what it means to be a person. Definitely for people who like realistic fiction.
**Librarian Side Note** This is the second year this author has landed on the Abe Nominee List. Last year's title was Everybody Sees the Ants. Now that I have seen that the reviewer says it's for fans of John Green, I definitely want to give this a try!