I've been remiss over the past few months in posting my progress in the Novels In Verse Reading Challenge. While I have been reading, I've failed to write and post my reviews. Here are my abbreviated thoughts, and my take on a star rating system, for The Firefly Letters, All the Broken Pieces, What My Mother Doesn't Know, What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know, and Waiting.
|Photo courtesy of George Schick
by Margarita Engle
When Fredrika Bremer visits Cuba from Sweden in 1851, Cecelia, a young slave who longs for home, becomes her guide. She introduces her to the people, the customs, and the magic of the island. In a time when women do not have the freedom to roam, the journey they make together creates a bond that breaks cultural barriers.
This book is beautifully written, with characters and setting that are richly drawn. I give it this gorgeous purple, finely textured starfish.
|Photo courtesy of Mary R. Vogt
Born in war-torn Vietnam and then living with a loving adoptive family in the United States, twelve-year-old Matt Pin cannot forget what he left behind: his mother, his brother, and a terrible secret. But Matt learns through the people around him - his piano teacher, baseball coach, and his classmates at school, that everyone has been affected by the war.
I give it this lovely star that illustrates what we can do if we come together.
What My Mother Doesn't Know
What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know
by Sonya Sones
Although I enjoyed the author's writing, these two stories weren't for me. A lot of "lusty crushes", raging hormones, and very little else. I've heard plenty of good things about these books, so I imagine teens can relate. Perhaps I'm just too far removed from those teen years to appreciate these two. I'm giving each of them this sparkly star shoe, because they obviously appeal to others, they just weren't a good fit for me.
|Photo courtesy of J. Durham
Waiting by Carol Lynch Williams
|Photo courtesy of Scott Liddell
This is the story of a missionary family shattered by the tragic death of a beloved brother and favorite son. After distancing herself from her friends and boyfriend, sixteen-year-old London finds herself broken and alone, trying to cope with the loss while living with a mother who ignores her, a father who is distant, and a house full of blame.
I love Carol Lynch William's writing. Her previous novel in verse, Glimpse, is one I've read and re-read. She really knows how to make readers feel. I cried my way through this book and I'll probably read it again.
I give it the starfruit because there was a lot below the surface in this story, and once you've taken one bite, you can't stop.
What was the last novel in verse that you read?