They say fiction imitates life. This seems to be true of the latest in Bloomsbury’s “If Only” line. The fifth novel is like a backdoor snapshot of political life, only we see it through the eyes of two sixteen-year-olds.
STORY: Katie is the daughter of the republican candidate for president. Drew, the son of the democratic candidate. The two meet while participating in a joint television interview, and wind up spending the day together. What they discover they like is getting to know each other without the pressures of their parents campaigns, which may be exactly what will end up driving them apart.
Red Girl, Blue Boy, by Lauren Baratz-Logsted | Book Review
If looked at as a contemporary novel readers can read and enjoy without wondering what kind of twists are coming in the flip of a page, this novel is darling. There’s lots of typical teenage romance and it’s quite sweet. I liked that about this. But as with everything, there were some things I wasn’t quite as fond of. For example, the dialogue seems forced or perhaps, more accurate, it’s not “natural.” However I do realize this is an ARC copy of the novel and as such, the final print might have the benefit of last-minute changes. I also don’t connect with the characters as I’d have liked. Perhaps it’s because, in fairness to the characters, these teens act more their age than some of the other YA books I’ve read, and given how far removed I am from that age-group, perhaps this makes a difference?
BOOK REVIEW | ‘NOT IN THE SCRIPT,’ BY AMY FINNEGAN‘RED GIRL, BLUE BOY,’ BY LAUREN BARATZ-LOGSTED #FWarchives Click To Tweet
Opposing this very argument, I will say I did get a kick out of Katie’s lack of understanding for certain pop culture references. This is a cute subplot, and I quite enjoy experiencing Katie’s attempts to understand these. Much of her knowledge is from movies (not because she’d been kept away from the world, rather because she’s laser-focused on her father’s campaign) as opposed to living and experiencing life. At this pivotal time in America’s politics, this read will certainly suit the nation’s mood. It fits in perfectly with the time and decisions we’re in need of making. I will say (in my opinion), one party is put down more than the other, subtle though it may be. If that’s something that might bother a potential reader, just be aware it’s in the story. Overall, I did enjoy Red Girl, Blue Boy. It’s a wholesome story that cuts out the bad of teenage life and keeps to its fun scenario, focusing on the plot as seen from the eyes of candidate’s children. I’m looking forward to reading more in this line, both those that came before and any that might follow.
About the Book:
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Author: Lauren Baratz-Logsted
Source: Publisher via NetGalley (ARC e-copy)
Publication Date: 2015
Find the Review elsewhere: Amazon ǀ Goodreads
Shop the Book: Bookshop.org ǀ Goodreads
Series: If Only Line, 5
Genre: Fiction; Young Adult Contemporary
Sincere thanks to the publisher for providing a complimentary ARC e- copy of Red Girl, Blue Boy for reviewing purposes.