[REVIEW] Following Zippy

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Series: N/A
young adult, realistic fiction
July 2014
Flower Child Publishing
Purchase: Amazon
Following Zippy
At fifteen most kids only have to worry about their homework or the style of their shoes. Gabe Perkins isn't most kids. When diagnosed with a terminal illness, he begins to make friends with a girl so ethereal, he starts to question his own sanity.

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“He’s trying to get through you. He wants you to see Him for what He is. He wants you to know His name.”
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Following Zippy is a very straight forward inspirational story about a kid who was diagnosed of cancer. It’s basically about living life to the fullest and realizing that everything, as in everything, really does happen for a reason.

It honestly started slow for me perhaps because I have no idea about Gabe’s situation – what it truly feels like. But after a few more chapters, things started getting into my head – I was reading Following Zippy and it just came to me that what if I was the one in his situation. Wouldn’t I think that life is so unfair? Why me of all people? There are worse people out there who should probably get this kind of terminal illness – people who do bad things and such. By mentally trying to put myself on Gabe’s shoes, somehow I get to feel the story even more.

Gabe is your typical kid. One fancy party, he was punched by the boyfriend of the girl who likes and BAM! his life just turned 180 degrees – he found out he has cancer, the girl he likes started approaching him, and he started seeing this girl named Zippy telling him stuff about God… about a Higher Being that never leaves him, have plans for him, and he should put his complete trust on. There were really a lot of developments on Gabe – you’ll really be able to understand where he’s coming from and why he’s thinking what he was thinking, why he’s not believing in such a Higher Being.

The people around Gabe are another aspect of the story that’s noteworthy. While I didn’t find Gabe’s relationship with Darla very convincing, it was well established. I was just looking for further development. The secondary character I really like in here is Gabe’s mom. It’s not that I’m a mom (because I’m not). I just really love how Burdette wrote Gabe’s mom. She’s so realistic and her feelings really reach me as I read. AND Zippy (how could I forget Zippy?). She’s a really wonderful character. She gives the best words to Gabe. She was basically the way he was able to realize things in life – like how he should live his life to the fullest and not mope around, like he should see this illness as something that happened for a purpose… Her words are the fire of this novel and Gabe’s condition is the fuel.

I’d recommend Following Zippy if you like straightforward inspirational stories (stuff like Tuesdays with Morrie). It’s a really wonderful read with realistic characters and nicely wrapped up ending. Very moving in deed :)

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What I Like: (1) its inspirational nature, (2) there was a good development on Gabe, you’ll really see where he’s coming from and why he thinks the way he does, (3) GABE’S MOM – she’s like the best character in here and even though I’m not a mom (or not even close to being one yet), I feel so much for her, (4) this contains A LOT of really inspirational words that makes me want to live life to the fullest

What I Didn’t Like: (1) the lack of development on Gabe and Darla’s relationship, (2) I didn’t feel so much for Gabe at the start (but that could just be me not completely putting myself on his shoes at the start)

very inspiring story + somehow relatable and nicely written characters = nice read

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“We all have control over our own actions, Gabe. Even times when it seems like we don’t.”

“Maybe you should get your eyes off of what’s going on in your head, literally and figuratively speaking, and get your eyes on what should be in your heart.”

“The biggest change in the world that you can make is a change within your own heart.”

“Sadly sometimes it takes a bad situation to make people realize how much of a change is needed in their life.”

“And you’re fine with just getting by with an ‘okay’ life? Why not spend your life to the fullest? No one knows who’s here today and tomorrow.”

“He has a path for you but you have to find Him. You can’t do anything on your own but if you fall into His arms, I’m sure He’ll guide you to the place where you are supposed to be. Let Hislight shine through you and be a blessing to this world.”

Sometimes in life, we never get to really say what we feel for one another because we have this strange mentality that there will always be another day, and another opportunity to express our feelings.

“You know, He let this battle happen not because He’s careless but because He knew that something good would come out of it.”

I grew up a gypsy at my parents hands. With a dad in the Air Force, I got to experience life on the road, soaking up culture. After spending 6 years working as a model, I realized that the industry wasn't much of what I was looking for in life. More often than not I felt like Jo Stockton in Funny Face and escaped into the world of film, where your job is based on something more than beauty. Though I do love 12 hour days on set, there's nothing like snuggling up with a warm laptop and letting my fingers dance away to create a whole new world.

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