Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for an honest review.
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)
Thirteen-year-old Violet is sure her busy and prominent senator-and-senator’s-wife parents will never approve if they find out Violet regularly sneaks off to ride her skateboard at a park in Harlem. So Violet lies to keep her skate park life a secret. But when her nonverbal artist brother mysteriously begins to reveal Violet’s secrets through artwork, it may be time for the truth to spill out in Violet by author Renée Lichtenhan.
This middle grade novel is quite an involved story with a diverse cast of characters and a touch of the supernatural. I found the read to be slow for a while, so it took me somewhat longer to get into it than I would have liked, but I eventually became engrossed as the plot uncovered its various moving parts.
I appreciate that the story addresses serious issues in the characters’ lives, including socioeconomic factors and the effects of violence, drugs, and family dysfunction. However, as the characters have a range of tough problems, the story goes about fixing too many of them in a way that feels pretty convenient. While I’m a fan of hopeful and satisfying endings, the several resolutions for the characters’ challenges seem quick in this case, making the story’s ending a little too perfect.
Nevertheless, it’s interesting how this contemporary novel mixes the down-to-earth and the unearthly, and plenty of ChristFic middle grade readers and fans should enjoy it.