Sunday, December 16, 2007

Leaving Paradise


Elkeles, Simone. 2007. Leaving Paradise.

Leaving Paradise is narrated by two teens--Caleb, a teen just released from juvenile detention for running over someone while he was drunk, and Maggie, the teen, the victim, who is still recovering from her injuries and learning how to walk, how to function. Caleb may seem at first glance like an unlikely hero for a book. After all, if he really was drunk, really did run someone over, really did leave the scene of the accident, then why is he such a good guy? Why is he so likable? Maggie used to have a huge crush on Caleb. He was the twin brother, of one of her former friends, Leah. The accident ended their friendship and dashed Maggie's dreams of happily ever after with that guy. After all, how could she ever love the guy who hit her? But a romance is straight where this book is heading--at least at first glance. Maggie and Caleb. They're forbidden to see one another, forbidden to have contact. Yet fate has a different plan, a different reason for always making sure these two are thrown together. Is such forgiveness, such love, such grace possible? The back cover reads What happens when the person who damaged you for life . . . becomes the person you trust most?

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I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
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I am not a fan of:

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  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

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