Friday, March 25, 2011

What I Saw and How I Lied, by Judy Blundell

What I Saw And How I LiedEvie thinks she is just on a glamorous vacation with her mother and stepfather.  Evie thinks that Peter is her first real love.  Evie thinks her life is about to begin. Only too late does Evie learn the truth.  The truth about her mother, her step father, Peter, and the world at large.  And once she does learn the truth, she abandons it, in favor of what she thinks is necessary.

I really like books from the WWII and post WWII era, if the setting is done well, and I think this one fits the bill.  Set in the days after the war, when GIs were struggling, and scraping to make a life as civilians.  The setting of the book feels luxurious, and slightly glamorous, decadent even.  Yet real life is made glaringly apparent, time and time again.

I enjoyed the character of Evie, and watching her really become an adult, albeit too soon, over the course of the story.  In the beginning she seems to young, and by the end, she had matured so much.  And while it saddened me to see the turn in some of the characters, I recognized it as being necessary for the story.

There is a lot going on in the story.  Romance. Suspense. Crime. Racism. It is a lot for young adult readers to take in, although they are the targeted demographic.  Yet I think books like these are good for high school readers, letting them see history in a new way.  Letting them learn what the life was like in the late 40s and early 50s.  And although the topics are serious and somewhat adult, there is nothing lurid about the book.

All in all, an intriguing read, making me anxious to see what else Blundell publishes.

This book is from my personal library.