Interracial relationships are now so common that they barely register on my radar. Several years ago, they may have been pretty scandalous, but nowadays I thought we could all agree that there are more important issues we can worry about rather than obsessing about skin color and personal relationships. Reading Crumble, by Fleur Philips, reminded me that not everyone is as open minded and accepting as the people in my life, and that in some areas of the United States, interracial relationships are still very much a big deal. Where I live, my perception is that most folks don't even look twice when they see a biracial couple. Now that I've read this book, I realize that might not be the case.
Crumble is a story of young, forbidden love. In the mountain tourist town of Kalispell, Montana, Sarah and David are two teenagers who are anxious to start a new life together in Los Angeles. All they need to do is make it through high school without Sarah's father finding out about their relationship. Sarah is sure her father will never accept that she is in love with a black man, but she has no idea just how passionately he would object, and the lengths he would be willing to go to in order to put an end to their love affair. She begins to realize that she doesn't know her father as well as she thought she did, and that his past holds dark secrets she cannot possibly imagine.
Reading about a couple's relationship struggles, due to nothing more than race, is sad and disheartening. Close minded hatred is so difficult to understand, and witnessing it, even at a fictional level, is disturbing and frustrating. Nonetheless, Crumble has an important message that everyone should remember. Struggles exist, whether we see them in our everyday lives or not. Hatred is sometimes deep rooted, and often based on misunderstanding and misplaced emotions. The book is fairly short, at 166 pages, which makes it a very quick read. The story is extremely compelling, so once I got started I was done with the book in no time at all. The characters are realistic, making me feel like I knew them. Although Crumble is a romance, its larger picture involves increased social awareness. I won't promise a light read, but it is a page turner that won't take long to get through.
I received a complimentary copy of Crumble in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.