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Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Review: The Last Little Blue Envelope (Johnson)

Title: The Last Little Blue Envelope

Author: Johnson
Genre: Fiction, Travel, Letters, Grief
Pages: 304
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars!

First of all, if you have not read "13 Little Blue Envelopes," I must ask you to stop reading this review, get to your nearest library/bookstore and get a copy (should be in paperback), and READ it! When I read it years ago, it completely moved me! I still want to be Ginny, or at least have someone in my life that will send me on such a journey. I continue to plot how I will do this for my kids some day. I cannot say enough about how much I LOVE this book and continue to recommend it to my students, and my grown-up friends as well. Any friend of mine that has read "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" (Brashares), is required to read "13 Little Blue Envelopes" in order to continue being my friend (just kidding...or am I?).

And now Maureen Johnson has written the sequel and we finally get to find out what happened to the last blue envelope that Ginny received from her aunt. When envelope #13 was stolen at the end of the first book, Ginny was left wondering how the journey was supposed to end. Now, a mysterious stranger in the UK contacts Ginny claiming to have found the missing letter. What adventure will it lead her on this time?

This sequel did not disappoint. The writing was distinctive and on the mark. Whether we are hearing the story from Ginny, or reading her aunt's letter, we feel as if we are there and are immediately drawn into Ginny's quest. The setting is well drawn, and the imagery evoked is memorable (at one point Ginny and her friends are staying in a youth hostel/cat shelter. Completely crazy, but you can totally picture what it looks like).

The characters are unique, the dialog between them is perfect, and everyone feels just like friends you would want to meet on such a journey. Even though Aunt Peg exists only in letters, she is a fully developed character and her letter/asides add so much to the story. You will continue to root for Ginny to complete her mission and find love, happiness, and closure.

Without a doubt, this is a MUST read!

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