[ARC Review] Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin TalleyMonday, September 29, 2014
Title: Lies we Tell Ourselves
Author: Robin Talley
Genre: YA Historical Contemporary
Format: Hardcover, 384 pages
Release Date: September 30th 2014
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Source: ARC received from publisher in exchange for an honest review
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In 1959 Virginia, the lives of two girls on opposite sides of the battle for civil rights will be changed forever.
Sarah Dunbar is one of the first black students to attend the previously all-white Jefferson High School. An honors student at her old school, she is put into remedial classes, spit on and tormented daily.
Linda Hairston is the daughter of one of the town's most vocal opponents of school integration. She has been taught all her life that the races should be kept "separate but equal."
Forced to work together on a school project, Sarah and Linda must confront harsh truths about race, power and how they really feel about one another.
Boldly realistic and emotionally compelling, Lies We Tell Ourselves is a brave and stunning novel about finding truth amid the lies, and finding your voice even when others are determined to silence it.
When I heard about this book last year, I knew I wanted to read it because I love books that are based on real events, and take place in a setting that is historically significant. So when I got the ARC of this book I knew I would look forward to reading it, and I was right. This book was one that demands to be read, because it will make you realize how much our ancestors went through for us to live in the place we do today.
Sarah and Linda are our two narrators and I think that part of the book was my favorite. Those two POVs were what made this book so compelling because we got to see two sides of the same issue. Sarah, and African American who is one of the chosen to integrate into an all white high school. Linda is the the daughter of one of the most outspoken officials against segregation, and yet they are put together on a project and everything changes. I loved reading how these two girls dealt with the issues at hand. Obviously Sarah;s were more severe and honestly I was shocked at how she was treated. I mean I read about this in high school but for some reason reading a personalized story seemed that much more real and hurtful. The author did an amazing job showcasing how these girls were treated on both sides, and how much it affected them as people and those around them.
The only real issue I had with this book was how many subjects the author decided to deal with in the 400 pages. Not only did she tackle the race issue, but she also decided to weave in the lesbian issue as well. Although I have absolutely nothing against these issues, I just though it was too much for one book. I found that at times one issue took more importance than the other, and vise verso throughout the book, and it was confusing to me as to which was worse or better for the characters. In my opinion I think it would have been better if the race issue was the focal point and the rest was left alone. I would have rather the girls become best friends instead of lovers, because for me the two issues together seemed a bit unlikely? It was just too much for me.
Overall this book was a great read, fast paced and full of amazing characters. I had just had a few issues with the overall plot line I just wish that the author would have stuck to one topic and not tried to put both together, because I think they distracted from each other in the end.