Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Lottie Barrett Lives (Again) by Hugh Centerville [Review]

Lottie Barrett Lives (Again) by Hugh Centerville
Format: ebook
Source: provided by the author for an honest review
Date read: November 30, 2013

Hugh Centerville
| Website | Amazon | Paperback | Kindle |

Synopsis (Goodreads):
It’s Halloween night, 1966. 13 year old Lottie has been dead a 100 years and the kids go up to the graveyard with the book of spells Charlene Pendergrass swiped from Miss Robespierre. The kids are going to have some fun scaring themselves, bringing Lottie back, but it turns out Miss Robespierre isn’t the faker everyone says she is and there’s nothing fake about her book either and now there’s a ghost-girl walking the streets of Hope Mountain and what to do with her?

Maybe nothing.

Lottie’s no zombie ax-murderer. She’s just a peculiar kid who wants to be a teenager, something she missed the first time. What else she wants is Bobby Clyde, cutest boy in the freshman class and how can Bobby resist? Lottie is cute and sweet and funny, or are those things illusory, a witch’s spell on Bobby? And what’s Bobby going to do when it’s time for Lottie to go back up onto the hill? Bobby is determined to go with her. Lottie doesn’t think he should go but she doesn’t think she could live (or die,) without him. Only Bobby’s mom and big sister can save him and before they can save him, they have to convince themselves it really is true, and there isn’t much time.
Thoughts on Lottie Barrett Lives (Again): I'm torn on how I feel about this book. I liked elements of it and as a coming of age novel, it worked nicely. But... I'm not sure how I feel about how everything was tied up. (and while I want to go into specifics, I won't. Because I try not be all spoiler-y.)

The thing I keep going back to is how Lottie tried to trick Bobby. I can understand she was scared at first and she was trying to keep her identity as a ghost/zombie hidden but tricking kisses out of him kind of skeeved me out. Especially since he clearly wasn't interested.

I'm a little unclear on the whys of Charlene's zombie-girl posse, too. Were they fully aware of what Charlene was asking them to do? Did they know what she was capable of? Their actions at the end of the book confused me.

Just so we're clear, I didn't hate this book by any means. However, I wasn't satisfied with the ending (Bobby's ending, in particular. His ending felt like it nullified any lesson he might have learned from the experience.) and I feel like I missed something as far as how the book (the spellbook, not the book-book) manipulated things to make them happen. Again, I won't go into specifics (because spoilers!) but the glimpse back at the past and Lottie's family life left me with more questions than answers.

That said, this book is a solid look back at small town life back in the 60s. Again, as a coming of age novel (for most everyone but Bobby) it worked.


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