Published by: Scholastic Press
Year of Publication: 2008
Summary (from goodreads.com): In 1947, with her jovial stepfather Joe back from the war and family life returning to normal, teenage Evie, smitten by the handsome young ex-GI who seems to have a secret hold on Joe, finds herself caught in a complicated web of lies whose devastating outcome change her life and that of her family forever.
Review: I heard about this book on a blog, and I was instantly interested in it. I was intrigues by the secrets and how that would affect Evie’s family.
My favorite part of this book was Evie. She was such an interesting character, one of the best characters that I’ve read about in a long time. I wanted to know what she was thinking and doing, what would happen to her, and where she would end up at the end of the book. I can’t pinpoint why I liked her on one thing. I just connected with her instantly.I think part of it was that this a coming of age book for Evie. In the beginning she is clearly a girl, but throughout the book she negotiates what it means to be a woman and comes through on the other side grown up.
As much as I liked Evie, I didn’t like her mom, Beverly. I found her disconnected from both her husband and her daughter. I thought she stayed in the dark about the things that her husband did to make her life easier, even though in the long run it didn’t really work out for her.
Peter always seemed like a mysterious person to me. As much as I learned about him, I always felt like I was one or two things away from really knowing him and why he did the things he did. I wish the author had developed his character a bit more.
The trial scenes were interesting and fast paced. I kept wanting to read on to find out how things would turn out for the family. I thought the decision on Evie’s part about her testimony was what she totally would have done, that she stayed true to who she was. I liked that that decision impacted her later on, and wasn’t just a one time thing.
If you’re looking for a book that has a first love, murder wrapped up in a coming of age story, check out What I Saw and How I Lied.
Disclosure: I borrowed this book from the library.