Smackdown Books 2018

Wolf Hollow
Salt to the Sea
The Serpent King
Optimists Die First
The Hate U Give
Orphan Island
Dan vs. Nature
The Female of the Species
Upside Down in the Middle of Nowhere
Paper Girls, Vol. 1
The Passion of Dolssa
The Distance Between Us
When We Collided
Louis parmi les spectres
Girl in the Blue Coat
Defy the Stars

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Blue Coats of the Universe

I was ready to be won over by Girl in the Blue Coat, as I typically enjoy "WWII/Holocaust" novels, and I was satisfied by it.  It was plot-twisty enough to be unique in its character development, and it seemed more a mystery that happened to be set during WWII where politics took a bit of a background to the central mystery.  Hanneke did frustrate me as she waxed melancholic from time to time or, alternatively, seemed reluctant to help others, but I did warm up to her as she warmed up to saving a girl she had never met.  I also enjoy reading anything having to do with the resistance movements of the time so I liked the history that was portrayed through the characters she encountered.

That said, I chose to read it first knowing I would prefer it - only to be bowled over by Holding Up the Universe.  I'm not a "romance" reader on a good day, so teen romance makes my palms sweat and I feel carsick.  Usually.  However, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed meeting Libby and Jack, and how much I was rooting for both of them as they worked through their own struggles, yet found each other and ended up being the extra bit of strength the other needed.  I liked the book - go figure!

So, my vote goes to Holding Up the Universe, even though I will put Girl in the Blue Coat in a book club for students, because I truly enjoyed the characters.  They were warm, funny, and resilient, and they had a humanity that I just didn't feel with Hanneke.

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