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Book Review: Mary Jane by Jessica Anya Blau

Mary Jane by Jessica Anya Blau is a coming of age novel taking place in Baltimore, Maryland. During the 1970's, fourteen year old Mary Jane is caught in the middle of her family's conservative ideals and the progressive ideals of the Cone family where she is a summer nanny. Mary Jane is a sheltered teen who enjoys cooking with her mother, listening to Broadway Show Tunes, and singing in the church choir. On the first day of work, she is shocked at the mess in the Cone's home and introduces them to home cooked meals and keeping the house clean. In return, Mary Jane gets a front row seat to sex, drugs, and rock & roll. This novel was the selected for the book club I belong to. Again, this is a novel that I likely wouldn't have chosen to read on my own, but I was glad I did. Mary Jane is the first novel I've read by Jessica Anya Blau, and I was impressed with her storytelling.  Touching on race, class, and stereotypes, along with drugs and infidelity, it reminded

Book Review: Still Me (Me Before You, #3) by Jojo Moyes

Still Me (Me Before You, #3) by Jojo Moyes is the third and final installment in the Me Before You Trilogy. We catch up with Louisa Clark arriving for her new career as a personal assistant to Agnes Gopnik in New York, New York. Living in the servant quarters and having to quickly adapt to this strange, new life of high society, Louisa finds herself desperately missing her boyfriend Sam and her family back in England. When Louisa meets Joshua Ryan at one of the high society events, her life is turned upside down.

What can I say about Still Me (Me Before You, #3)? Jojo Moyes is an amazing writer, and I absolutely was sucked back into Louisa Clark's story. I am glad I had a three day weekend to be able to finish this memorizing novel and am a bit sad that the author mentioned at the very end that she likely won't write any more stories about this character. This makes me sad, but I am guessing the author may be feeling a little burnout with this series. That or she really didn't want to write a series but felt pressured to do. I don't know the reason for sure, but I definitely hope she reconsiders and writes at least one more novel containing Louisa Clark and her family.

One of the biggest things I loved about this book is that Louisa finally starts to come into her own and exploring opportunities that present themselves to her. She finally realizes that she has to live her own life and can't always do what is expected from her. Another thing that I loved was that things aren't always what they seem, especially when it comes to people with sour dispositions. Moyes definitely did a great job of wrapping up Louisa's story in a great way, but as I said before, I still want more!

I definitely don't have very many complaints about the book. The only complaint that I have is really a minor one. At one point in the book, Louisa directly talks to the reader. This seemed a bit odd to me and detracted a bit from the story line. Other than that, I absolutely loved the book. I gave this book four out of five stars.


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