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I ordered a used copy which said very good, so I was expecting very good. It came and there was a mark on the front from a sticker and a sticker on the back which left another mark when took off-the book itself is good though, I can read everything and seeing as I only paid two or three pounds opposed to six it was worth it-maybe not good for a present though.
I read this book after hearing a lot about it and all the good reviews it had been given. It has been the best book i've read in a long time. The characters were so real and you warm to Evie straight away. An extremely good read. Would definately recommend it.
Judy Blundell's novel about a young girl's journey to self-discovery, love, and learning about being an adult and how to deal with her family is poignant and rich in hard life lessons that's enveloped in a believeable post-WWII world. Her main character, Evie Spooner is likeable but far from perfect, making her very, very relatable. For the crushing, moving lessons it felivers, Blundell manages to keep the tone from becoming too dark, too forbidding, or even too depressing, despite the weighty issues she explores.
I read this novel for a class discussion and was impressed. Neither I nor my classmates had heard of it before, which is odd considering the high accolade is bears on its front cover.
I would consider this a great read for the tween-to-YA age-group, though for the younger readers I would suggest the parent give it a go first, as it does deal with issues of sexuality, among other serious issues (no spoilers, no spoilers!).
Reading this novel felt like a trip back in time, honestly, as the novel is written so perfectly in that tone of YA novels from decades past. If your young reader dislikes Twilight-style narrative, this might be more up his or her alley. On that note, I'm a 27 year old and I enjoyed the novel; it was a quick read (two sittings for me) but very satisfying in a way that few books these days seem to be. I couldn't put it down, despite picking it up almost as a chore for my class. While I recommend it highly, it's not something I can see myself coming back to again and again, thus only 4/5 stars from myself.
I spent three years of my life dreading power outages, but I must say, I am truly grateful for the one I had yesterday.It allowed me to reread what was one of my most favorite books as a fifteen year-old. What I Saw and How I Lied is a brief, yet complex tale of growing up.
What I loved most about the novel was that it turns the widespread notion that the years following World War II were a golden age on its head. In fact, it works in an almost Gatsby way: Evie starts out the novel with a bright, childish, innocence about her, and her experiences allow her to think twice about the world around her.
“I loved him like a fever. Then he left. He kicked through love like it was dust and he kept on walking.”
First, I must say that Blundell has a way with words- she has a way on inserting little flowery (prose wise) moments throughout the novel while still making allowing Evie's voice to shine through. If it wan't for Blundell's skill, this book would not be nearly as a good or as powerful.
“Darling, I have a tip," Arlene said. "Never, ever wait for a man.”
What I Saw and How I Lied is also a tragic love story- yes, in the conventional sense-> between a girl and a boy. But it also has a lot to do with the love between husband and wife, daughter and mother, daughter and father, and in some ways, a man and a woman. Throughout the novel, Evie struggles to figure out what real love is why trying to become an adult.
"But while I'd be their daughter, while I'd eat the roast and come home from dates and wash the dishes, I would also be myself. I would love my mother, but I'd never want to be her again. I would never be what someone else wanted me to be. I would never laugh at a joke I didn't think was funny. I would never tell another lie. I would be the truth-teller, starting today. That would be tough. But I was tougher.”
There is also a serious Gone Girl quality to this book: it's unpredictable, and it's characters fluctuate between downright ugly and downright cruel. You never known when the truth will rear it's nasty head, and makes for an exciting, interesting read.