Thank you to Hot Key Books for sending me and all The Bookclub girls a copy!
I have to admit I’ve ever picked up a Juno Dawson book before but I definitely will now I’ve read this one! She has a memoir coming out this year which I am particularly interested in reading. This was our Bookclub pick for January and it seems like everyone really loved it. It’s split between two perspectives (which is something I really love). One perspective follows Fliss, a city-loving, slightly spoilt teen who gives into going to Wales with her mum who is fighting cancer, to live with her Grandmother, Margot and give her mum a break. Whilst exploring the farm Margot lives at, Fliss finds her diary from the 1940’s, during WW2 when she was evacuated. The second perspective is this diary that Fliss finds, giving all the nitty gritty life of a teen evacuee. So the book is split both between the early 1940s and then the 1990s, making for a really interesting and invigorating read.
I will say that it took me a while to get into the beginning of the book. I found that I wanted to jump straight into the nitty gritty as soon as possible. I can understand why Juno had that build up, to establish all the characters and relationships but for me, it took up slightly too much time. Once I got over the hump, the action and twists just kept on coming. Juno wasn’t afraid to just go for it, with Chapter 11 giving me a particular chuckle!
One thing I really appreciated about the book was it’s tackling of issues ahead of its time. By this I mean, in both perspectives, there was an essence of well integrated diversity which wasn’t shoved in your face, but it was there and I appreciated it. Including this in the 1940s sections of the books was a particularity refreshing choice.
Both Fliss and Margot during their sections are facing the same issues with boys, friends and tragedy, showing that there isn’t really that big of a difference between the two generations after all. As a protagonist, Fliss is great. She gives up meat when she meets a piglet who she calls Peanut, not for the sake of the piglet, more to annoy her grandmother.She obviously loves her mother very much and the three of them together have a sweet connection. I liked Fliss but I LOVED Margot. She goes through fair few things in her perspective and each one makes me love her more.
You can tell that both sides are building up to a great ending, but, boy, does this one pack a punch! This book will make you want to hug it close to your self, snuggled up in a blanket. Pick it up and experience Fliss’s whirlwind at a new school with mean girls and one (particularly) hot librarian and then dive into Margot’s world with her s she rushes to get home and keep reading her diary.
It really is a great read and tackles many issues all in one book! I can’t wait to pick up more of Juno’s work. I hear it’s wonderful.
This book is fantastic. A great look at the 1940s and the 90s, with a really monumental ending. Is it worth keeping a secret so you don’t hurt someone?
Thank you lovelies and happy reading! ox