Sunday, 18 March 2012

A Step from Heaven by An Na

This is such a beautiful book. The voice is so clear, and it really puts you into the head of a small child who's confused about her move to America. The title of this book comes from a cute scene where Young Ju is convinced that America is Heaven and she is told that it's not quite Heaven, but a step from it. She tries very hard to fit in once she's in America, which is difficult because she doesn't speak much English. Not only that, but her family is very poor and her father sometimes beats her mother. The way her character grows from the first chapter to the last would make me cry, if I was a crier. Some parts of the book are just so simply profound you just want to sit there and think about the last few sentences you read. The book is short, but a perfect length for the story it wants to convey. There are no filler scenes- I can promise you that! Each chapter has a wonderful title. My favourite (chapter, not title, but the title's nice too!) is Strong Like a Man, featuring Young Ju's brother trying to follow his father's example of what it means to be strong. This is a wonderful read that won't take you very long to get through, but you'll end up rereading it many times just to glean some more of it's moving messages.

If you loved this book, you'll like:

Pretty much anything. I can't see how you wouldn't like this book, to be honest. But there's no book that I've read so far that's like it.

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