Book Reviews

Black Sheep: Fighting for a Future (Black Sheep 3) by Kia Zi Shiru

Genre Contemporary / Young Adult / Gay Fiction
Reviewed by Alex on 08-July-2013

Book Blurb

Black Sheep: Letting go of the Past is the last novella in the trilogy.

Jack is dead, Adam is back in the hospital in the worst condition he's ever been and Vic believes it's all his fault. That he's the reason everyone's hurting and that there's only one way to end it - to end his own life.

Then the doctor bears bad news, Vic's own condition has worsened and his days are numbered.

This is the wake-up call Vic needs. Maybe he can, for once, make people happy before he hurts them in the worst way possible. He hides his condition from everyone, not wanting anyone to worry while he's trying to make them happy.

But time is running out. Will Vic see his wish fulfilled before the end comes?

**Black Sheep Trilogy is a Young Adult title that deals with heavy subjects but has little cursing and no sex.**

**The trilogy is also available as a single volume, containing all three books.


Book Review

This third installment of the Black Sheep Trilogy reveals a fulfilling, but realistically frayed ending to the deeply emotional series. Devastated by Jack’s brutal death, Vic blames himself; he is not alone in this, Jack’s anti-gay parents blame him as well. Subsequent treatments with Dr. West follow, and after several tests, Vic learns that he won’t be getting better. His illness, coupled with the abuse and drugs given to him by his chief abuser, ex-boyfriend, Dave, have all taken their toll on his body and his brain; Vic is dying. He and the doctor make a pact, he will follow the regime faithfully, which will leave him the time he has left to heal his family and his friends; the doctor will keep the news of his impeding death to himself until both agree it must be shared.

Seen through the eyes of Anne, Adam, and Vic himself, are the final months of Vic’s life as his family and closest friends all seek to heal from their various emotional hurts and find a way to live with their painful experiences. Support comes from surprising areas and new truths are revealed in this uniquely crafted final volume. As the healing begins, Vic tracks its progress through his art, leaving his loved ones a heart-felt portrait of a family on the mend as his final gift.

I’ve said it before and I will repeat it here, in my opinion this trilogy is an important work, documenting an inside view of the world of self-harmers. Will it leave you lighthearted and carefree? I don’t think so, but it will give you a rare experience of deep-felt emotion, and an understanding of the lack of ease many teens who self-harm go through.

Kia Zi Shiru has captured the isolation, disassociation and apathy that drives individuals to self harm, exquisitely, and also sheds light on the resulting emotional damage to those family members and friends closest to the victims of this dangerous disease. The books offer a rough ride from joy to pain to a fierce desire to live, a journey many of us, in our own way, have been on, but perhaps not quite this way.

Kudos, Kia Zi Shiru, for tackling and conquering this difficult and awkward subject so beautifully. In a word, “Significant.”





DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been purchased by the reviewer.

Additional Information

Format ebook and print
Length Novella
Heat Level
Publication Date 02-April-2013
Price $3.09 ebook, $6.99 paperback
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