Have you ever had a childhood sweetheart? The love of your life? In The Scars We Choose, the main character, Scarlett Elizabeth Nell Waverly, known as Lizzie Nell, has a love of her life. He is Julian Rose, who resides on the Florida Gulf Coast. When her family buys a beach house on this coast, she meets her prince, Julian “Hemingway” Rose. Although she is nine, and he is eleven, their puppy love begins. Lizzie Nell has vitiligo, and Julian has scars on his face. Lizzie Nell is white, and Julian is biracial. Sadly, while her parents prefer that she is only friends with peers of her race, this does not stop Lizzie Nell and Julian from becoming fast friends.
Scarlett, as Lizzie Nell prefers to be called, is now living in Grand Isle, Louisiana, and it is the summer of 2013. Scarlett is telling her friends, Ms. Pinkie Perideaux and Genevieve, Ms. Pinkie’s adoptive daughter, about how she met Julian. But she does not just tell them about him, she also tells them about everything, meaning her life.
As Scarlett divulges the details to Ms. Pinkie and Genevieve, she goes back and forth between her childhood and her present life. This style of writing will not allow Lee’s audience to lose interest in the story. In fact, it will keep them turning the pages. The more I read, the more I wanted to read, so I ignored my bedtime. I just could not and would not put down my iPad.
Also, I love Lee’s ability to allow her readers to broaden their vocabulary through Scarlett. Scarlett receives her first dictionary from her grandmother, Gramma Nell. Gramma Nell encourages Scarlett to learn a new word each day. Scarlett shares the new words that she learns, and explains their definitions in a clear manner.
This novel deals with the themes of friendship, acceptance, love, race, and loyalty. The way Lee addresses these themes will make you think about the dynamics of life. In fact, it may make you think about your own life. If you want to read a great novel that you will not be able to put down, then read The Scars We Choose because you will not be disappointed. Let me warn you about the exciting cliffhanger at the end. It will make you want to read the sequel, which is currently in the works!
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