Monday, July 13, 2015

Review: The Game of Love and Death by Martha Brockenbrough

Okay, Don't kill me. I was supposed to post this like three months ago, after I finished the book at like 2 am but I forgot...

Title: The Game of Love and Death
Author: Martha Brockenbrough
Publisher: Scholastic
Date Published: April 28th, 2015
Source: My Overflowing Bookshelf (bought)
Genres: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Fantasy
Links: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Author's Website
Rating: 4.8 stars

Antony and Cleopatra. Helen of Troy and Paris. Romeo and Juliet. And now... Henry and Flora.

For centuries Love and Death have chosen their players. They have set the rules, rolled the dice, and kept close, ready to influence, angling for supremacy. And Death has always won. Always.

Could there ever be one time, one place, one pair whose love would truly tip the balance?

Meet Flora Saudade, an African-American girl who dreams of becoming the next Amelia Earhart by day and sings in the smoky jazz clubs of Seattle by night. Meet Henry Bishop, born a few blocks and a million worlds away, a white boy with his future assured—a wealthy adoptive family in the midst of the Great Depression, a college scholarship, and all the opportunities in the world seemingly available to him.

The players have been chosen. The dice have been rolled. But when human beings make moves of their own, what happens next is anyone’s guess.

My Review

When this book caught my eye seven months ago, I knew. I just knew.

Tears were just falling down my face and I couldn't stop and... it was actually kind of relieving to have a good cry. It's been a while since a book has made me feel like that. It broke my heart in a way that makes me want to hold everyone in my arms and not let go until everything is okay.

All of the scenes Love and Death had together made me cry. Their interactions were just so bitter, hopeful, and expressed with such an undeniable wisdom that it made my heart ache. Their relationship is obviously very complex. They've been adversaries and companions since the beginning of time. (I ship them a lot.)

"Together, we make humanity more than it otherwise might have been."
-Love to Death pg.319

Henry and Flora. I could so understand Flora's struggle with what she wanted deep down and what she knew she couldn't have. As an African American girl in this time period, a relationship with a white boy was nearly unthinkable and certainly impossible if she wanted to earn enough money to achieve her dreams of becoming a pilot. Henry's problem is different. He doesn't really know what's he going to do. He has dreams, but he feels trapped in this one path that seems planned for him. Whether out of loyalty or fear of change he doesn't know what to do...until he meets Flora. This is where it gets more interesting because Henry, as a priviledged white boy, doesn't necessarily understand all her reservations about them being together, but he tries.

Ethan you poor, poor soul. My heart broke for you. Your character was written so realistically. Your fear, insecurity, and hidden suffering really fit into this book.

Everyone in it is essentially struggling with some part of themselves.

Honestly I don't even know what more to say about this book. I know my thoughts are really messy, but it was wonderful. I just can't do it justice. Go read it, now.

Why are you still sitting here? Go! Shoo! Read it!

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