Reviewed by me for Reader’s Favorite.
There could not have been a better title for this moving book by Keith Julius. Catch a Falling Star – The CASA Chronicles Vol 1 revolves around the life of Beverly, who is a CASA -The Court Appointed Special Advocates – worker, and Aleisha Turner, a mother of three beautiful kids and a heroin addict. Aleisha was married to a man named Mark, who is the father of one of her kids, Michael. The location of the father of her other two kids, Nataya (6 years old) and Willard (8 years old) was not known or mentioned. Aleisha turned to prostitution from time to time in order to get her daily fix.
One day, when she returned home all high on heroin, Mark realized that she had been sleeping around to get the money for her drug supplies. Long story short, he lost his temper and hit Aleisha with so much strength that she fell on the floor. When Willard realized that she wasn’t breathing, she was admitted in the hospital. It turned out that she passed out due to heroin overdose. This action started a chain of events that brought Beverly and many other CASA workers into their lives.
Willard and Nataya were now living with foster parents until Aleisha turned her life around by being in Rehab and later proving her ability to be away from drug addiction. Michael remained in the custody of Mark’s sister, Mary. Since Beverly’s main responsibility was to ensure that the kids are getting proper care, she visited the foster parents, Mary, and everyone involved in the lives of the kids.
We all know and talk about heroin (and other drug) problems; however, how much do we really know about the lives of the people that get impacted by it? The author has done a commendable job of showcasing the life of an addicted person with respect to everyone surrounding them. The more I read about Aleisha’s life, the more assured I became in the fact that we all look for acceptance. It’s easy to label people as addicted and then put all the blame of their problems on their shoulders; the tough part is to truly understand where they’re coming from. The conversation between Beverly and her daughter, Jennifer, on this topic is quite thought-provoking. Jennifer, like most of us, labels the addicted as loser; whereas, Beverly, thanks to her experience as a CASA worker, discards this label and explains to Jennifer that we don’t know what they went through.
The characters and their dialogues are extremely legit. Once I started reading, it was hard to put it down. The books like Catch a Falling Star – The CASA Chronicles Vol 1 remain in their hearts even long after we are done reading them. There are so many lessons and emotions in this praiseworthy book that it would definitely leave a mark in my memory for a long time. I would recommend it to the readers who appreciate an emotional book that targets a social issue in an empathetic manner.