Jun 9, 2009

Book Review & Giveaway - CLOSED

Made in the U.S.A. by Billie Letts

The bestselling author of WHERE THE HEART IS returns with a heartrending tale of two children in search of a place to call home. Lutie McFee's history has taught her to avoid attachments...to people, to places, and to almost everything. With her mother long dead and her father long gone to find his fortune in Las Vegas, 15-year-old Lutie lives in the god-forsaken town of Spearfish, South Dakota with her twelve-year-old brother, Fate, and Floy Satterfield, the 300-pound ex-girlfriend of her father. While Lutie shoplifts for kicks, Fate spends most of his time reading, watching weird TV shows and worrying about global warming and the endangerment of pandas. As if their life is not dismal enough, one day, while shopping in their local Wal-Mart, Floy keels over and the two motherless kids are suddenly faced with the choice of becoming wards of the state or hightailing it out of town in Floy's old Pontiac. Choosing the latter, they head off to Las Vegas in search of a father who has no known address, no phone number and, clearly, no interest in the kids he left behind. MADE IN THE U.S.A. is the alternately heartbreaking and life-affirming story of two gutsy children who must discover how cruel, unfair and frightening the world is before they come to a place they can finally call home.
My Review:
Made in the U.S.A. by Billie Letts kept me up past my bedtime, which is a good indication for me of how good a book is. Lutie and her brother Fale pulled at my heartstrings with their tragic story of loss, sacrifice, and truly tough times. 11 year old Fale was my favorite character in this book. His quirky love of learning facts about everything under the sun made me laugh. Even though he is younger than his sister Lutie, he has a better sense of what they need to do to take care of themselves. It took me awhile to warm up to Lutie, especially since she was, at times, selfish and even cruel toward her younger brother. It seemed as though Lutie would never learn to make the right choices, but eventually she began to let her guard down, and reveal a young woman with hopes and dreams, and the determination to work hard to achieve them. I read this book quickly, because I just had to find out what would happen to these children! I highly recommend Made in the U.S.A.
Thanks to Valerie at Hachette Book Group, I have FIVE copies of Made in the U.S.A. by Billie Letts to give away!
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