Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Violets are Blue by Barbara Dee - ADVISABLE

Violets Are Blue by Barbara Dee,
304 pages. Aladdin (Simon and Schuster), (September) 2021. $18 

Language: G (0 swears); Mature Content: PG; Violence: G. 



12yo Renada's life is upended when her parents divorce. Her mother is struggling at work, and struggling at home - the divorce has been hard on her and she gets more and more withdrawn and private. Hoping for a fresh start, they move to a new town over the summer, where mom gets a job as a nurse. Rennie wants a fresh start, so changes the spelling of her name to Wren. Making a friend right away, Poppy lets Wren practice special effects makeup on her and encourages Wren to help with the makeup for the school musical "Wicked." But when Wren's mom doesn't show at opening night, Wren begins to realize that her mom's sickness is more than sore knees and long working days. 

Dee tells a complicated story of middle school social structure, dealing with divorce, finding yourself, and the effects on a child living with a parent with an addiction without it feeling like too much was going on. As an adult, I saw the addiction signs right away, but for a younger reader without background knowledge, the story will slowly unveil itself right along with Wren. I really enjoyed it.

Lisa Librarian

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