Monday, 17 June 2013

Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys

Out of the Easy
by Ruta Sepetys
Summary: It’s 1950, and as the French Quarter of New Orleans simmers with secrets, seventeen-year-old Josie Moraine is silently stirring a pot of her own. Known among locals as the daughter of a brothel prostitute, Josie wants more out of life than the Big Easy has to offer.

She devises a plan get out, but a mysterious death in the Quarter leaves Josie tangled in an investigation that will challenge her allegiance to her mother, her conscience, and Willie Woodley, the brusque madam on Conti Street. Josie is caught between the dream of an elite college and a clandestine underworld. New Orleans lures her in her quest for truth, dangling temptation at every turn, and escalating to the ultimate test.
So this book started out as a disappointment, but somewhere along the line it turned into one of those books I was left hugging after finishing the last page.

I lovelovelove Ruta's first book, Between Shades of Gray, so this book had a lot to live up to. And I think that was my problem in the beginning; I had all these expectations but comparing that book and this one is like comparing a tree to a car--they're just so completely different that expecting them to have the same sort of impact and get under my skin in the same way is ridiculous. 

Once I threw those expectations out of the window, and once I was about a quarter/a third of the way into the book, I started to realise that I really cared about these characters and I loved the setting and that I didn't want to stop I didn't. It's nearly 4am right now because I stayed up to finish the book and I regret nothing (although, the headache I have right now is a bit dkjfbvkdhjb).

Josie doesn't really make my list of favourite main characters--on her own, she wasn't that special, she felt realistic though, and she annoyed me at times but that was okay because that's realistic too. What made me love the book and really care was the relationships she had. She had this essentric group of people in her life, and they weren't related to her by blood but together they made up this strange little family and I loved that and I loved the side characters and just...yeah. 

The plot...I don't know. It wasn't anything spectacular, but I loved it anyway and the setting and the characters made it really work. I've never read a book with this sort of subject matter and this setting before--the closest thing I can think of is the movie Pretty Baby, but the book made me want to read more books like it.

Words. I'm not so good at those when I've not slept, so I'll stop trying to explain my thoughts on this, but the book was awesome. I don't know if it'll linger with me in the same way that Between Shades of Gray did, but I loved it and would rate it 4.5 stars out of 5. Ruta Sepetys has totally cemented her spot on my insta-read list.



  1. I was a bit unimpressed when I first started this book too, but the characters quickly grew on me as well! Sepetys is great at writing characters :)

    Nice review!

  2. I wasn't really feeling this book at first either (more because it was set in New Orleans and the 50s, not my fave settings) but it won me over with its great relationships as well. Another winner!



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