Saturday, 19 November 2016

Book Review: Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley

I'm back again with another book review, this one being one I've had in the pipeline for quite a while now. If you read my blog regularly, you'll be quite aware that I love particular genres more than others. One of these genres is, of course, Young Adult fiction. I have an amazon prime subscription and find that often the next day delivery isn't entirely necessary, so I sacrifice this in favour of the free amazon kindle credit. with this credit, I've bought quite a few different books, all amazing in their own way. 

The first book I chose was the subject of this review: The Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley. This is one of those books that everyone seems to be talking about nowadays, particularly considering recent events. The story focuses on a group of teenagers, although principally follows two teenagers, and concentrated on the process of integrating black pupils into an entirely white establishment. I have to admit; I was incredibly sceptical about this one. it sat on my kindle, unread and crying out for attention, for a good few months before I took the plunge and got my head stuck into it. Once I'd started, I definitely had no chance of not finishing it quickly. 

It's one of those books that just makes you feel, a book that uses its words to advise and impact upon you as a human being. It had me grasping for every opportunity to read 'just a few more pages’, including during one of my less interesting Masters classes. I hesitate to use the word 'unputdownable', but that word is oh-so-relevant in this particular case as it was one that I knew I had to see through to the very end- and quickly!

The story itself is a simple and telling one, but the issue itself which is oh so relevant today in a world which seems to be regressing instead of progressing at an alarming rate. The alternating perspectives between Sarah, a black girl involved in the integration process and Linda, the white daughter of one of the main oppositions of the process, is particularly poignant. Of course, Talley chooses to take the story one step further than just the already complex issue of 1950s black/white divide. I'm doing so, she raises questions that are indeed still being addressed today. I found myself instantly interested in and almost compelled by the characters and their individual stories and demons. 

I rarely find myself in a situation where I want to completely rant and rave about a book’s brilliance. For me, books are all brilliant and compelling in their own way and it takes something incredibly special to change my thoughts and my feelings. This book is definitely one which has done both of those things. It’s one that I’d recommend to everyone, something that I have already done to a number of my friends. It’s a book that will stay with me for coming years and I am incredibly glad to have read it.



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