Tuesday, September 6, 2016

ARC Review: The Peculiar Night of the Blue Heart

Title: The Peculiar Night of the Blue Heart
Author: Lauren DeStefano
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Publication Date: September 13, 2016
Source: Bloomsbury for Review

Lionel is a wild boy, who doesn’t much like to be around other people. He’d rather be a purring cat or a wolf stalking the woods.

Marybeth is a nice girl. She doesn’t need to be told to comb her hair or brush her teeth, and she’s kind to everyone at the orphanage . . . Lionel most of all.

Different though they are, Lionel and Marybeth are best friends in a world that has forgotten about them. So when a mysterious blue spirit possesses Marybeth—and starts to take control—they know they must stop it before the real Marybeth fades away forever.

My Review

After reading Lauren DeStefano's middle grade debut, A Curious Tale of the In-Between, last year, I was hooked. I loved the story, the pacing, the characters, and the adorable creepiness that the book had. I knew it was a two-book deal, so I patiently waited for more and more information on her second middle grade book, which ended up being The Peculiar Night of the Blue Heart.

What I first realized about The Peculiar Night of the Blue Heart was that this was not a sequel to A Curious Tale of the In-Between as I thought it would be back when both novels were announced. While both are fantastic middle grade novels, both stand on their own, and they can be read in either order. However, they are similar in nature. Both books feature characters who are young orphans. Both novels have slightly creepy feels to them and both revolve around young characters who are attuned to the paranormal in the world around them. It was interesting to compare and contrast these two books, but I'm very happy that they are two very different books with two very different stories to tell.

Within the first chapter of The Peculiar Night of the Blue Heart, I was already attached to the two main characters, Lionel and Marybeth. The two live in an orphanage and they have become quite attached over the years with Marybeth often looking after and mothering Lionel. Yes, they are different in many ways, but they learn and use one another's differences to be able to help one another. That comes in handy when wild boy Lionel is confused when Marybeth starts acting very unlike herself, and the two of them have to figure out a way to keep Marybeth calm while trying to figure out just what's happening to her.

Lauren DeStefano's writing is also fantastic in this book. She knows how to engage her readers with her words. She's serious when she needs to be. She's playful when the story calls for it. But she's also mastered how to be extremely serious, especially in some of the darker scenes of this book. I loved seeing how her writing was able to bring out all of these feelings of the characters, and I just love how she wrote this book. It's magical.

Just like in A Curious Tale of the In-Between, Lauren DeStefano captures the attention and hearts of her readers with her playful and lyrical writing style. Her book is entertaining and it does not falter. The Peculiar Night of the Blue Heart is quirky, heartwarming, and full of lessons that any young reader will appreciate for their honesty. I could see this book and its predecessor becoming middle grade cherishes classics for years to come.

Lauren DeStefano (pronounced: de STEFF ano) is a lawn gnome enthusiast and New York Times bestselling author of some books, which you can find listed below this bio. For the first six years of her life, she thought she was a mermaid and still has her suspicions. When she isn't writing, she is often composing tweets that make as little sense as possible. They can be found here: https://twitter.com/LaurenDeStefano

No comments :

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.