Sunday, March 21, 2010

Book Review - What I Saw and How I Lied by Judy Blundell

When Evie's father returned home from World War II, the family fell back into its normal life pretty quickly. But Joe Spooner brought more back with him than just good war stories. When movie-star handsome Peter Coleridge, a young ex-GI who served in Joe's company in postwar Austria, shows up, Evie is suddenly caught in a complicated web of lies that she only slowly recognizes. She finds herself falling for Peter, ignoring the secrets that surround him . . . until a tragedy occurs that shatters her family and breaks her life in two.

As she begins to realize that almost everything she believed to be a truth was really a lie, Evie must get to the heart of the deceptions and choose between her loyalty to her parents and her feelings for the man she loves. Someone will have to be betrayed. The question is . . . who?

My Thoughts: I read this book in one sitting. Absolutely could not put it down. I was immediately caught up in Evie Spooner's life....Sixteen years old, shares secrets with her best friend, just beginning to get boy-crazy, and longs to be more like her mom. Beverly Spooner is a beauty and has the figure of a pin-up girl. She is constantly telling her daughter not to "grow up too fast". Evie yearns to wear lipstick and dresses like her mom.

A sudden spur-of-the moment trip to Palm Beach Florida changes everything. Her stepdad Joe decides they need a vacation, and they head down to Florida. Before the trip, he gets a mysterious phone call....a man wanting to know if he was the same Joe Spooner that he knew from the war. Joe denies it. Then in Florida, the lie catches up with him.

Some ugly truths are revealed, and Evie gets caught smack-dab in the middle of them. However, she is transformed in Palm Beach....she falls in love with a man seven years older than she, her wardrobe changes, thanks to a generous new friend that she meets at the hotel...her life changes dramatically. She becomes older and wiser beyond her sixteen years and her loyalty is put to the ultimate test.

There were several "Oh no!" moments for me while reading this awesome novel. I can't recommend it enough.

Photobucket Outstanding!

  • Reading level: Young Adult
  • Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic Paperbacks; Reprint edition (January 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0439903483
  • ISBN-13: 978-0439903486
Literary Awards:


Brittanie said...

Good review. The book sounds interesting. I just put it on my hold list at the library. :)

Jeanne C. said...

this one is on my wishlist!

Gwendolyn B. said...

I read this back when it was first published and felt pretty much the same as you - I could not put it down. I've seen a lot of negative reviews for it though, and they mostly seem to come from younger readers. It seems to be a love it or hate it type book and for some reason it appeals more to older readers. Maybe someone should do a study on that . . .

Kristen said...

There's a sort of pin-up girl quality to the cover that is so appealing. And your review makes it sound great inside too.

Stephanie said...

I couldn't put this one down either!

Anna said...

A few people read this for the WWII challenge last year, so I've had my eye on it for awhile. Glad to see you liked it so much.

I hope it's okay that I linked to your review on the Book Reviews: WWII page on War Through the Generations.

Diary of an Eccentric


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