Blackbird: A Childhood Lost and Found

Blackbird: A Childhood Lost and Found - Jennifer Lauck Lauck has an amazing story to tell about five or six years of her life, starting when she was age 5 and her mother's health went from bad to worse. The story was gripping, and I couldn't put it down.I did struggle with the author's voice, especially in the first part of the book where she is writing from the point of view of herself at age 5. The childish tone, which is presumably meant to be true to a 5-year-old's voice, made the book almost unreadable for me. Here is an example from page 54 the paperback edition:     Dr. Smernoff comes over and puts his hand on Daddy's arm. Daddy stands up and the policemen and Daddy and Dr. Smernoff talk the way grown-ups talk, all at the same time.     Daddy puts his hands up and the police ask him a couple more questions and then they close their notepads. The policemen leave and the big one waves at me.     I don't know what to do, wave, not wave, and I just smile and put the sucker back in my mouth.I have read several novels and memoirs about childhoods, but this is the first one I have read that tried to capture the language of a child. I'm not sure if she's trying to evince further poignancy (not necessary, since the story was powerful enough to tell on its own) or to try to be true to the 5-year-old main character. I think it is an unfortunate choice. Happily, the language gets more readable as the author moves later into her childhood, and the last half of the book is much better.