Book Title: The Lauras
Series Title: N/A
Author: Sara Taylor
Publisher: Originally William Heineman, now Penguin-Random House
Date Released: August 4, 2017
Target Age: YA
Target Genre: YA Contemporary
Diversity: Yes. LGBTQIA (non-binary & pansexual main character) & Race
Setting: Virginia, USA (Road Trip)
What is this book supposed to be about?
“I didn’t realize my mother was a person until I was thirteen years old and she pulled me out of bed, put me in the back of her car, and we left home and my dad with no explanations. I thought that Ma was all that she was and all that she had ever wanted to be. I was wrong.
As we made our way from Virginia to California, returning to the places where she’d lived as a child in foster care and as a teenager on the run, repaying debts and keeping promises, I learned who she was in her life-before-me and the secrets she had kept – even from herself. But when life on the road began to feel normal I couldn’t forget the home we’d left behind, couldn’t deny that, just like my mother, I too had unfinished business.”
What is my review? Fasten your seat belts for this one! Thanks FTR for this arc in exchange for an honest review!
It is about a teenager, Alex, who identifies as non-binary & pansexual. I loved the author’s gender neutral choice for the main character. The mother on the other hand, behaved like a teenager. There was no real character development. Immaturity all around. They left Alex’s dad behind and take off in the middle of the night. Screw him, right? I gave a 1/5 for character development. It was flat with no real depth to any of the characters. I gave it one for creating a non-binary character.
No clear-cut plots because it’s a road trip. At this point, I couldn’t care if I was interested. We go on a journey to read about the Lauras that effected the mother’s life. She goes on about why she calls them Laura. But that was towards the beginning of the novel. And hey, no reaction after a character has been raped. And you have to read the ending. Nothing holds up the book at all. 1/5 for this one.
There is a problem with the “supposed” teenager. Some wonky sentences. And the young teen sounded too grown up for a thirteen-year-old. The main character didn’t sound like a teen. 2/5 for this section.
No struggles with formatting. 5/5 for this section.
The book cover is beautiful! That is the one thing I love about the book. 5/5 for the book cover.
1+1+2+5+5=14 or 2.8. For a total of 3/5 stars.
What are my personal thoughts about this book?
WARNINGS: Yes, there is a statutory rape scene in the beginning of the novel. If that triggers you, you might want to skip this novel. The next problem I found was an anti-Semite statement made on page 246. If that offends you, you might want to skip this novel.
I didn’t care for any of the characters by the time I finished this novel. I was truly aggravated with it. At one point the characters helped kidnap “Annie” from her family. The mother acted like a young teenager. She didn’t take responsibility for anything. Not to mention, she didn’t care if her sixteen-year-old teen left. No stability whatsoever. No conclusion or reaction for the young raped teen. Luckily, I take in account of the book cover, some diversity, and formatting to remain fair.