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review 2016-12-26 20:04
Another Brooklyn by Jacqueline Woodson
Another Brooklyn: A Novel - Jacqueline Woodson

I love Jacqueline Woodson's books. I've read quite a few of them now and I absolutely love them. Another Brooklyn is no exception. What pulled me in to this book the most was it's setting and writing.

 

I grew up near Brooklyn and I always love reading books that take place in New York because it brings me back to a time where I went to these places often. The way Woodson described the tall, red brick buildings brought back so many memories... and that's the main theme of this book: Memories. What we go through in life and how we react, how we remember those events and the impact it makes. Just... so many experiences that make us who we are. I love this book.

 

The writing was especially gorgeous! It's lyrical, almost as if you're reading spoken word poetry. I was transported to Brooklyn, my home. I could envision the streets, the people, the bodegas, everything. How I miss home.

 

The characters were interesting. Each living their own lives and storing their own memories. I loved reading about what they went through and felt for them whenever they had to deal with hardships because of discrimination. How people never wanted to give them a chance at life because these girls were black. It's a heartbreaking tale that racism once again plays a hand in. But the message where we must keep going even if everything seems hopeless, is what makes this book beautiful to me.

 

It's not a happy read. But it's an important one. It's a book I think everyone should read if only to understand what it means to live and to hope and to strive... even if memories remind us of how cruel the world can be.

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text 2016-12-12 20:48
Another Brooklyn: A Novel - Jacqueline Woodson

A slight, spare book, which has the compression and space of poetry. (I think I would think this even if I didn’t know that Woodson is a poet.) It’s about girls growing up, doomed and beautiful and alive. I did wish for a little more resolution, but that’s just my desire as a reader–Woodson is obviously making very deliberate choices about giving us these particular moments in time and no more.

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review 2016-12-12 19:24
Another Brooklyn
Another Brooklyn: A Novel - Jacqueline Woodson

The story is good, but it's really the writing that makes it magnificent.

The book is written in a wistful sort of way and kind of rambles sometimes and keeps the reader in that feeling of being in her stream of consciousness. Its poetic in the way that it discusses some of the harder topics, like the denial we can experience in childhood about what's going on in the world or that hides truths we can't handle yet. I loved the way her mind wandered sometimes from one thing to another and how it effected the way that she remembered things.

Most of all, I love that it was a true story of the lives of girls. Each girl is different, but they all go through those things that all girls go through. They deal with those things that we deal with and Woodson uses that poetic style to include these things without dwelling on them or having to describe them in unnecessary detail. Her writing lets you really feel the story in a way that is unusual. I appreciate writing in a way that walks the reading through that feeling of things we remember rather than life as it happens. I also enjoyed this way of writing with The Girl Who Wrote Loneliness.

The path of each girl wasn't unexpected, though I didn't know which would go which way and there were several others to choose from. This is just the way of things, down to the ways they drifted together and apart. This will be one of those books that could easily be used to describe the way of life at the time it is set. I wouldn't even say specifically for the place that it was set because the lives of the girls are relatable to just about every group of girls I've ever known. It's late 20th century America in the city. There are some truths that may keep it out of high school classrooms, but I could easily see it brought into the college American Literature class. I would certainly use it. This and her memoir written in poetry, Brown Girl Dreaming.

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review 2016-12-06 00:00
Another Brooklyn: A Novel
Another Brooklyn: A Novel - Jacqueline Woodson This is a story about growing up female and black during the 70's in Brooklyn. It covers from preteen to adult, mostly focusing on the early teen years. Homelife, family, religion, parents, boys, poor people, addicts, kissing, dating, friendships, sex, drugs, music, attitudes, beauty, goals, basically everything about growing up and life is touched on. It almost seemed like a diary of an adult telling about the past and has sort of a poetic feel to it. It's great at putting you in the moment.
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review 2016-11-18 01:05
Another Brooklyn
Another Brooklyn: A Novel - Jacqueline Woodson

I loved the way this novel was written. The story felt complete yet so few words were used to tell it. Short prose paragraphs made up each page, sometimes using just one or two sentences.   It takes a master to do this, to orchestrate it so beautifully, meticulously picking out the precise words, being careful not to leave anything out, and creating a picture that the reader is drawn to. My emotions were swept away as August deals with the death of her father and the memories of her childhood. As a child, she yearned for the world outside her window but her father locked her and her brother inside their apartment telling them that the world was not as safe as it seemed. The few short years that she spent with her mother, her mother’s harsh words about women have cast a dark shadow on August and female relationships yet what she witnesses out her window, have her thinking that perhaps her mother might have been wrong. And now, where has her childhood left her? Her brother’s words remind her of where she is at but it is still her choice with what she does with her life. It was an emotional read, not one that I cried with or one where I sat at the edge of my seat but a novel where the emotions were felt throughout my whole body. I believe the story was a simple one, but it had a great impact.

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