Thursday, March 22, 2012

Letters in Cardboard Boxes by Abby Slovin

Letters In Cardboard Boxes tells the story of an eccentric grandmother and her granddaughter alongside a series of fantastical letters they once exchanged. Their letters once traversed the East River to help Parker escape the loneliness of a childhood without her globe-trekking parents and communicate during her turbulent teenage years. Now, nearly a decade later, Parker begins to rediscover the evidence of this letter writing tradition, as well as the family’s untold stories and, unexpectedly, letters from her grandmother’s own youth that paint a very different portrait of the woman who raised her.

Letters carries us through the universally-shared experience of loss and the process of coping with life’s unexpected twists and turns. Through unusual and bold characters, the story moves through some of its heavier themes with honesty and humor. ~~ synopsis from Goodreads 

My thoughts on Letters in Cardboard Boxes ~~

Okay, so once again, the cover hooked me. And once again, I loved the story in the book! Pretty good system I've got here ~ great covers = great books!

Seriously though, I loved everything about Letters in Cardboard Boxes. Well, maybe not everything, there were a couple of things I didn't like, but more on that in a minute. I loved the relationship between Parker and her grandmother ~ what a neat relationship they had. And I loved the very mature and together teen, Tanya, who Parker thought she was doing a favor by mentoring, but who ends up becoming a great friend. And then there is Jerry, the neighbor who was very much a part of Parker's family's past and who is there for her now. And I loved how Parker and her grandmother thought a perfect way to spend an evening was to watch old movies all night and to finish off a whole pie. Gotta love it!

The letters that Parker and her grandmother wrote to each other started out as a way for them to stay in touch when Parker was young. The letters came from places they imagined, from all over the world. But those short notes also contained very wise life lessons, written from grandmother to granddaughter.

Parker's life has really never been easy and with her grandmother getting up in age, there are some tough decisions to make. But surrounded by her new friends, who quickly become like family, and her grandmother's letters, she learns to do the right things.

This is a great book and I highly recommend it, especially if you like a story with real, likable characters.

Oh, and the one or two things I mentioned above that I didn't like ~ that would be Parker's parents! They were off galavanting all around the world leaving Parker to pretty much raise herself. How could they do that? Thank goodness for grandma!  


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