Friday, April 28, 2017

Book review - Lemons

Title: Lemons
Author: Melissa Savage
Genre: historical/realistic fiction
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a solid read

Summary (provided by publisher): Fans of Kate DiCamillo’s Flora & Ulysses and Katherine Applegate’s Crenshaw will fall in love with this charming adventure story about a girl learning to accept her new life, her quirky detective neighbor, and their epic search for Bigfoot.
Lemonade Liberty Witt’s mama always told her: When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. But Lem can’t possibly make lemonade out of her new life in Willow Creek, California—the Bigfoot Capital of the World—where she’s forced to live with a grandfather she’s never met after her mother passes away.
Then she meets eleven-year-old Tobin Sky, the CEO of Bigfoot Detectives Inc., who is the sole Bigfoot investigator for their small town. After he invites Lem to be his assistant for the summer, they set out on an epic adventure to capture a shot of the elusive beast on film. But along the way, Lem and Tobin end up discovering more than they ever could have imagined. And Lem realizes that maybe she can make lemonade out of her new life after all.

My opinion: In some ways, this is a standard fish out of water story. Lem wishes for her old life back even as she begins to adjust to the new. The cryptid aspect gives it some freshness. It's historical in setting, and needs to be for the sake of certain plot elements, but doesn't feel particularly historical. This has two very different effects on the book. on the one hand, it gives it an air of universality. We don't get stock on the history elements so it's easier for modern readers to relate. On the other hand, because we sometimes forget that this is set in the late 60s, those historical elements that do come through can be a bit jarring. Or we find ourselves wondering why the characters don't, say, Google a subject. This can leave the reader feeling slightly off kilter. Still, it takes itself seriously and thus doesn't belittle the thoughts, emotions, and experiences of the reader.

More information: Lemons releases May 2.
Advanced Reader Copy provided by NetGalley.

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