Sunday, November 15, 2009

When the Emperor Was Divine

When the Emperor Was Divine When the Emperor Was Divine by Julie Otsuka

My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I read this for my book group, and we are discussing it on Wednesday, so it's possible my views will change. As it is, though, I wasn't impressed. Rather than being a real novel, tracing the lives and struggles of believable people, this book seemed to be essentially a didactic YA novel intended to illustrate what happened. I didn't see much of interest in the characters or their reactions to their experience.

I know that Vermont chose this as the Vermont Reads book this year. I question whether it makes sense to select what is essentially juvenile fiction to ask all the readers in the state to read and discuss. I just don't think there is enough to it for that.

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