Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Paradise by Joanna Nadin - OPTIONAL

Nadin, Joanna Paradise, 257pgs. Candlewick Press, 2012. $16.99. Language: PG (14 swears); Mature Content: PG; Violence: PG

Sixteen-year-old Billie Paradise unexpectedly inherits her grandmother’s house and decides that this may be the just the thing that will save her and her family. Her stepdad is traveling with his band and so Billie, her mom, and her younger brother pack everything and move from a small broken down London apartment to a grand house on the seaside. This could be Billie’s chance to find the father she has never known and learn why her mom fled this town so long ago and never wanted to return. First love, family secrets, and timeworn lies will all be realized as Billie accepts her legacy.

This book has an interesting story idea, but falls short of truly engaging the reader. At various points in the story, plot twists are presented with the intent to surprise the reader, but instead fall flat because the path of the narrative is transparent from the beginning of the book. The absurdity of one subplot intended to shock will instead leave the reader laughing. Overall, the book is a pleasant read, but forgettable.

MS, HS —OPTIONAL, AEB Social Studies Teacher

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