“Very good”Betsey B wrote this review Saturday, February 25, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This book had me hooked from the very beginning. Story is told from three different points of view: A very young Grandma (45 years to be exact), her Daughter, and Grandaughter. Full of wit, sassiness, mystery, and love, this was a brilliant read and one to pass on for sure! ”Brenda wrote this review Friday, February 24, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This family of three generations of women has seen more than its share of trouble over the years – especially every 15 years when truly tragic things seem to happen – but their strength, love and determination are amazing. The story is charming, funny, honest and inspiring and keeps the reader engaged throughout as the characters untangle past secrets and find new ways to adjust and grow while sorting through an endless list of challenges. ”Voorheesville Library wrote this review Wednesday, February 22, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“A real page turner. Once I got sucked into the story, I couldn't put it down. There was never a lull; this story kept moving and kept me wondering what would happen next. I love the characters. They feel so real to me. ”Julie E wrote this review Tuesday, February 21, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Meh. I would rather have had the whole thing about Big.”Emma J wrote this review Friday, February 17, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Jackson's best book to date! Amazing!”Elizabeth F wrote this review Tuesday, February 14, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“I loved this book! ”lovetoread wrote this review Thursday, February 9, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Another great book by Joshilyn Jackson!”Kim B wrote this review Tuesday, February 7, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“i really enjoyed this story”Eileen N wrote this review Sunday, February 5, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This review first appeared on my blog: http://www.knittingandsundries.com/2012/01/grown-up-kind-of-pretty-by-joshilyn.html
The novel starts out with Big (Virginia), 45 years old and her fears that something bad is going to happen. After all, something bad seems to happen every 15 years. She had her daughter Liza when she was 15 years old. In turn, Liza had her own daughter Mosey when SHE was 15. Liza had a massive stroke at Mosey's school dance when she was 30, and she is still recovering, unable to communicate and struggling to remember the tiniest things. With Mosey now getting ready to turn 15, Big worries that Mosey will repeat both her own and Liza's behavior, and end up pregnant at 15 as well.
Mosey, however, is determined that SHE will NOT follow in those footsteps. Despite being a virgin, she has a supply of pregnancy tests that she uses "just to be sure".
When a silver box with infant bones is found on Big's property as the willow tree is being removed to put a pool in for Liza's therapy, the mystery of where the bones came from and whose bones they are pulls at Big and the reader as Mosey and her friends work to figure it out as well.
Told in the alternating POV's of all three sassy women (Liza in third person, Big and Mosey in 1st), this tale of three women from "the wrong side of the tracks" is authentic and heartwarming, full of wit as well as sadness. You will cheer them on, and, applaud Big's strength as she faces the person who could tear her Mosey away from her.
I LOVED all of them. Closing the pages on this one was difficult, as I'd instantly become immersed in their story. I cheered Liza in her small steps to recover from her stroke and laughed at the way she "played" her mom sometimes. Big has a huge heart full of love and protectiveness for her family (a lioness, that woman!). Mosey is an awesome teen, and her quirky friendships made me smile. I got angry at those that took advantage of and hurt these women and got away with it, and hoped against hope for a comeuppance.
I have an audio of "Backseat Saints" by Ms. Jackson that I haven't yet listened to. Let me tell you, based on THIS book, I will be picking up as much of Ms. Jackson's work as I can. I've said it before and I'll say it again, if a book makes you "feel" the emotions of the characters and, in this case, makes you want to jump into its pages to slap someone :), it is a worthy read.
Pick this one up if you like strong women, a mystery, sass, and wit. Wonderful work.
QUOTES (from an ARC; may be different in final copy):
Big: I could have put an ad up on the Craiglist and tried to get one of my own: "Desperately seeking lawyer. Must like long walks on the beach, not getting paid, and losing." I hear there's a whole mess of lawyers just like that; they keep an office between Mermaid Cove and the Unicorn Forest.
Mosey: Before my mom had her brain event, I never even saw him have a conversation with her face. He talked lower, like he thought her boobs had microphones in them and if he aimed right he could order up a chili-dog combo.
Big: Next thing I knew, me and Lance Weston were slipping off together. I was pretty sure we were falling in love, and he was pretty sure that freshman girls with that much zombie punch in 'em put out. Only one of us was right.
Liza: Melissa owns brothers, three of them, and a bitch of a mother who is at least the right age and the right kind of adult stylish. Not like Big, who wears the same brand of jeans Liza wears and who will take Liza in her arms and then put her head on Liza's shoulder and cry and cry when Liza tells her she is pregnant.
Big: Because Liza was fourteen when she fetched up pregnant, and she'd told me the daddy was some kid she met at the carny. I tried to break out of his arms again, because I had to go find myself a gun and shoot a man.
Writing: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Plot: 5 out of 5 stars
Characters: 5 out of 5 stars
Reading Immersion: 5 out 5 stars
BOOK RATING: 4.8 out of 5 stars
Sensitive reader: Some saucy language and sexual references (see quotes above for examples) ”