Ramona Blue by Julie Murphy
Star Rating: ★★★★★ 5/5 stars
Format: ebook galley
Summary: Ramona is in the senior year of her high school career, everyone is asking what her plans are for after graduation but she has no good answer for that. Right now she’s focused on working multiple jobs to support her small family, with her sister being pregnant she doesn’t see a way out of her dilapidated trailer in her small Mississippi town.
Review: I received a free galley copy of this book from Edelweiss for review.
I really enjoyed this book a lot. I don’t like contemporary books in general so when I find one that I actually like then I get pretty excited. I liked how Ramona struggles to figure out how to be her own person yet also continue to support and care for her family.
I thought Ramona’s struggle with her sexual identity was really interesting. I don’t feel like this is a “the right guy turned me straight” story. I think it’s more of her discovering she is bisexual, she never discards her gay identity even when she dates Freddie. She doesn’t want to fully label herself which I think is fair. But throughout the book there are cases where you see Ramona attracted to boys and girls so I don’t feel like Freddie is a fluke thing.
I loved the comparison of Ramona to Peter Pan and Freddie to Wendy. I thought it was such a good comparison and that it worked great with them. I like that the book wasn’t really about romance, it was about Ramona coming into her own.
Ramona and her family were personally effected by Hurricane Katrina, they lost their home and their mom left the family as a result. It was really interesting seeing how it played into the whole book.
There are a couple times in this book where Freddie points out racial issues that Ramona hadn’t even considered being white. I thought that Ramona admitted her mistake and tried to learn from it, which I thought was one of the few times I’d seen that in a book. Actually acknowledging and dealing with it.
Recommendation: This is a really good coming of age book. I think there are a lot of unique aspects to this book and I really enjoyed reading it.