Hi guys and gals!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.
Today, we're playing host to a Pump Up Your Book Blog Tour starring a Young Adult title that certainly stands out from the pack. It all takes place over the course of one year, but what a time it is! Ready or not, today's book of choice is...
Wise Ink Creative Publishing
About the book....
College is not in the cards for Seth. He spends his minimum wage on groceries and fakes happiness to distract his mom from the MS they both know will kill her. It’s agony to carry around a frayed love note for a girl who’s both out of his league and beneath his dignity.
Quinn’s finishing high school on top. But that cynical, liberal guy in her social studies class makes her doubt her old assumptions. Challenging the rules now, though, would a) squander her last summer at home, b) antagonize her conservative dad, and c) make her a hypocrite.
Seth and Quinn’s passionate new romance takes them both by surprise. They keep it a secret: it’s too early to make plans and too late not to care. But it’s 1989. As politics suddenly get personal, they find themselves fighting bare-fisted for their beliefs—and each other—in the clear light of day.
This is not your typical Young Adult read.
The novel really stays with the times, tackling the year 1989 in its many colors. It was a time of change and some things that occurred shook the very core of what we believed we should be as a nation. It's like a history lesson with the highlights that affected us more directly put center stage mixed with a big lewd gesture to "the man" (think one handed with a particular finger raised solo). It deals with topics like political unrest, societal division, backyard economics, underage drinking, promiscuity, and abortion as easily as you and I breathe. Did I shock you? Good because I know I was for both better and a little not-so-better. Allow me to explain...
While the events covered are certainly in the history books (as well as the fairly decent sized "suggested reading" section at book's end), for this non-historically inclined reader, it was a bit TOO strong; especially the political aspect. I mean, I like to think about the bigger picture as much as the next person and contemplating the strife of my fellow man along with ways to end it is certainly worth everyone's time....but in my fictional reading, I prefer a lighter touch. The other shocker was how some of the weighty topics covered were presented as simply another part of the story. Perhaps it was to show the changing mind of Johnny Q. Public but with the breezy way abortion was brought into the story (how it seemed almost all the girls had or knew someone that had one), I'm not certain the real heft of the situation was felt. It was more, hey, our protection didn't work and I'm gonna take care of business so my life can go on...and if it was set in today's times, I might have bought it more easily, but this is when it was being debated more not seen as socially acceptable. It just didn't quite line up for me in that sense. Moving forward...
Picking the story apart a bit more, I will divulge that while I had a hard time feeling like I knew Seth (at least until the very end), I really enjoyed his character. He was caring yet stoic, shy yet able to stand for what he feels is right. He was dealt a hand not as easily played as Quinn's and though sometimes it got him down, he didn't let it count him completely out. As for Quinn, though she seemed a bit snobbish to me at times, caring way too much about what everyone else thought, I did harbor some affection for her by the time the final page was turned. She came a long way from the little girl idolizing her father's every act to an outspoken young lady ready to take on the world (all in a year's time, and yet THAT part was definitely believable!). Character growth is something one wishes for in every read, but seldom is it granted especially when working with such a limited time line. Kudos to the author for accomplishing that feat!
In conclusion, while not a tale for all, it will certainly be for some and that is enough of a reason to give it a second glance for consideration as an addition to your reading list. With colorful characters in a time of fairly decent unrest all around, there certainly were A LOT of walls in 1989, but they were also made to be broken. Recommended for YA fans that like a good dose of history in their reading while being introduced to characters not that unlike you and me.
About the author....
Katie Pierson freelances for local non-profits, using her background in public policy and grassroots organizing to overthrow the patriarchy one introverted step at a time. When she’s not writing fiction, she returns library books, makes soup, and tries to be cooler than she really is by hip-hopping at the YMCA. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in American History from the University of Pennsylvania (where she dabbled briefly in being a College Republican) and a Master’s in American History from the University of Minnesota. She grew up in Lincoln, Nebraska, and now lives with her family in a suburb of Minneapolis. ’89 Walls is her first novel.
Special thanks to Dorothy at Pump Up Your Book Promotions for the ARC for review as well as the chance to bring this tour to all of you. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, THIS TOUR, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title was released June 2015 via Wise Ink Creative Publishing, so be on the lookout for it on a bookstore shelf or virtual retailer of your choosing.
Until next time...happy reading!