Book Review: Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

This book was recommended to both Jordan and I by a mutual friend, Sydney. And we thank her for recommending such an amazing book for us to read. We also decided to take a bit of a different approach on this book review; both Jordan and I are going to review it in the same post so that you guys can get a wide range of opinions on this novel.

*This Review Will be Spoiler Free*

Jordan’s ReviewΒ Between Shades of Gray was an amazing and beautifully written book based in WWII. But instead of Hitlers Germany, it is Stalin’s Russia and the other countries that he “owned” and tortured. Many people in this day and age don’t stop to think about what else was happening during the time that Hitler was in power. This was me before I read this book. The characters were well thought out and Lina perfectly described her life before and during the time she was in the camps. Writing about the holocaust is a vey hard thing to do because of the gruesome things that happened to all those innocent citizens, however, I believe Ruta did an excellent job and portraying the pain in a way that wasn’t just about physical pain but also emotional sorrow. I did cry reading this book, although I do seem to cry easy when it comes to books nowadays but it was such a powerful book to read that I couldn’t help it. I loved the way we got to have some hope through a small romance during the novel that was very interesting and sad because of the situation they are in. My favourite character would probably be the Mom because she put everyone before herself, even the people who weren’t nice to her. Overall this was an amazing read and I think everyone should read a book like this because its about the holocaust but it isn’t.

Hannah’s Review This book was truly captivating and really showed a different perspective on WWII. It showed that there was horrid events going on all over Europe, and that it didn’t just come from Hitler’s rule but Stalin’s dictatorship as well. This is a book of survival, love, and hope. Without all of those things Lina and her family may not have had the story to tell that they did. This book showed that “Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if only one remembers to turn on the light.” (J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter Series). Sorry for sneaking a Harry Potter quote in there, I just can’t help it. Anyway, the story of Lina and her family taught me that trust and love can be preserved in even the harshest of conditions, and people can be taught to love when all else is seemingly lost. If you do choose to read this book (and I highly recommend that you do) you will see the light in the darkest times, as Dumbledore previously said. This is especially true for The Grouchy Old Man (though I won’t tell you why), and he was my favourite character all the way through. This book truly is a piece of art that has been abandoned with elegance.

Anyway here is the Goodreads link for the book:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7824322-between-shades-of-gray

And the Amazon Link just in case you want to buy it:

http://www.amazon.ca/Between-Shades-Gray-Ruta-Sepetys/dp/014242059X

Anyway, continue to design your own catastrophe…

Hannah

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