Goodreads 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.Goodreads /Amazon
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.
With characters as captivating as those in her internationally bestselling novel Between Shades of Gray, Ruta Sepetys skillfully creates a rich story of secrets, lies, and the haunting reminder that decisions can shape our destiny.
Genre: Young Adult
Publisher: Philomel Books
First Line: "My mother is a prostitute."
Favorite Quote: "I looked at the naked bookshelves. Shelves without books were lonely and just plain wrong."
I enjoyed Ruta Septeys' other novel, Between Shades Of Gray, last year, so when I saw the blurb of this I thought it sounded interesting and decided to read it. I think I might be in the minority here, but I actually liked Out Of the Easy more than BSOG. They're both amazing historical fiction novels, but this one just felt more like a story to me. BSOF let me a see a whole new side of history, and I appreciated it, but it was also very lesson-ish. I'm probably not making any sense right now, so, moving on.
I am officially in love with Sepetys' writing. It's very easy to get lost in, and the way she describes settings is beautiful. Historical fiction really isn't my thing in general, but once in a while I become enchanted with a certain time period. Reading Jennifer Donnelly's Revolution for example, made me really interested in the French Revolution for a time. Out Of the Easy has made me curious about the 1950s. I loved the French Quarter and all the mystery surrounding it.
I found it very easy to love Joise, the narrator, and all the characters in general, even the ones I didn't think I would like. Willie, for instance, seems like a villain in the beginning of the story, and as it progresses, she still isn't exactly a saint, but I was surprised by how much I cared for her at the end. Every one of them is fleshed out at least somewhat. It just feels like a very emotional book, and I can definitely say that I will be looking into whatever the author decides to do next.
The plot moved along nicely for the most part, with new questions springing up throughout. If I absolutely had to pick something out to criticize, I would say that I wish the love interest, Jesse, had been present a little more. I would have liked to more about him besides his unpleasant upbringing.
Books in this series: