A Box Of Bookclub is back for 2019! Jasper Jones Review + announcing the next group read for A Box Of Bookclub
I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas, summer holiday/ winter break and a smooth return to regular programming. I hope those in Townsville are safe & dry, you have been in our thoughts constantly. Also those experiencing the bushfires, what's going on!?! For those with young ones starting school (or high school like me) that they have got off to a good start.
We have moved back to Sydney but not yet back into our own home (thanks Mum for putting up with us, not long to go now!) so A Box Of is not back up and running at full capacity just yet but a few books have made the journey with us and the beauty of being online means that the book chats didn't have to stop! Our very first 2019 Book Subscription Boxes will be still be dispatched at the end of the month (if you want to find out more about those pop in here). I'm keeping the featured book a surprise until all the subscribers have received their boxes (it's NOT the same as our February group read, that will be announced at the bottom of this post).
Now, on to Jasper Jones...
For it me it was a novel that just got better & better as I read through. To begin with I wasn't sure if it was my cup of tea, by the end I couldn't put it down and didn't want it to finish. It is quintessential 1960's rural Australia, prejudice, racism, discrimination, dry wit, a tale of the underdog, small town mentality, community spirit and the coming of age of young boys. Jasper is actually a supporting character to Charlie Bucktin who is a sweet 13 year old having some harsh realities of life thrown at him. Jasper is the one the town has labeled "no good" and can't seem to get a break. The towns treatment of him is appalling. Charlie & his best friend Jeffery's relationship was delightful to read about, at times a bit too much talk of cricket but some hilarious bantering going on too.
"Great Australian read & really questions readers prejudices & misconceptions about certain people/socio-economic groups"
"I found such depth in each character and I was invested in each of their outcomes. Jeffery stole my heart though"
"What a lovely story as well as a very sad one. I loved all the characters but I really felt for Jasper. So misunderstood & stereotyped by a very backward & racist community. Thank goodness for friendship. Great choice of book."
" I adored this book. Even though it was set in times gone by, I felt that all of the issues are relevant today."
For our next group read we are taking a trip to suburban America with Celeste Ng's "Little Fires Everywhere". (currently $13.92 at the Book Depository or should be in your local library too). Have you read it? It's beautifully written, insightful, charming and will hook you in so you'll speed through it.
The Book Depository review states:
Everyone in Shaker Heights was talking about it that summer: how Isabelle, the last of the Richardson children, had finally gone around the bend and burned the house down.
In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is meticulously planned - from the layout of the winding roads, to the colours of the houses, to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules.
Enter Mia Warren - an enigmatic artist and single mother- who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenage daughter Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardsons. Soon Mia and Pearl become more than just tenants: all four Richardson children are drawn to the mother-daughter pair. But Mia carries with her a mysterious past, and a disregard for the rules that threatens to upend this carefully ordered community.
When old family friends attempt to adopt a Chinese-American baby, a custody battle erupts that dramatically divides the town - and puts Mia and Elena on opposing sides. Suspicious of Mia and her motives, Elena is determined to uncover the secrets in Mia's past. But her obsession will come at an unexpected and devastating cost...
Are you in? Shall we make the Facebook Group Discussion Monday 4th March. A quicker turn around than usual but I think once you start this book you won't want to put it down and it's not a difficult read. Also the year seems to flying by already so we are playing a bit of catch up!
Given our move I haven't had a chance to put together the usual suggested reading / listening / viewing list, I'm so sorry but you can find the past ones in all the previous book review blog posts here/ here/ here/ here/ here.
Enjoy your escape into the the bookish world. x