13 Little Blue Envelopes – Maureen Johnson
Genre: YA; Realistic Fiction; Coming of Age
Summary: After the death of her Aunt Peg, Ginny finds out that she is the recipient of thirteen envelopes with handwritten notes from her Aunt. Ginny is instructed to open the envelopes one at a time and in chronological order, and after she opens the first, she knows she will soon embark on the adventure of a lifetime. Will she be able to find out why her eccentric Aunt has sent her on this seemingly pointless endeavor, or will she remain in the dark about what Peg’s true motives?
Review: I’ll be honest: after reading Wings, the last YA freebie I got on my Kindle (I reviewed it a week or so ago), I didn’t have high hopes for this book, even though they are in completely different genres. I found that my trepidations were unfounded as soon as I started reading 13 Little Blue Envelopes, and I can’t wait to read the next book in the series.
It was truly enjoyable to accompany Ginny on her European voyage, and I was just as eager as she was to see where her crazy, awesome aunt was going to send her next. Who wouldn’t want to be sent on a trip to Europe where the destination wasn’t always known, and everything about her journey was contained in envelopes? Well, I’m sure there are some people who wouldn’t, but I am definitely not one of them.
Each stop taught Ginny some kind of lesson, took her out of her comfort zone, and made her really examine her life and her Aunt’s motives. Things didn’t always go quite the way she had planned, which, effectively, made the story incredibly believable.
As far as characters go, my favorites were definitely Ginny and Peg. Ginny seemed very much like your average teenage girl, and was someone that many girls could relate to; it was great to see her growth throughout the book. Peg was quite an oddball, and I loved hearing stories about her through other people and the letters she wrote.
If you’re looking for a light, entertaining read that will keep you guessing about where the protagonist is off to next, definitely give 13 Little Blue Envelopes a try.
Other Books in this Series: The Last Little Blue Envelope (expected to be released on April 26, 2011)
Other Books by this Author: Devilish, Girl at Sea, Suite Scarlett