Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys
Published by Philomel Books, 2013
It’s 1950, and as the French Quarter of New Orleans simmers with secrets, seventeen-year-old Josie Moraine is silently stirring a pot of her own. Known among locals as the daughter of a brothel prostitute, Josie wants more out of life than the Big Easy has to offer. She devises a plan get out, but a mysterious death in the Quarter leaves Josie tangled in an investigation that will challenge her allegiance to her mother, her conscience, and Willie Woodley, the brusque madam on Conti Street.
Josie is caught between the dream of an elite college and a clandestine underworld. New Orleans lures her in her quest for truth, dangling temptation at every turn, and escalating to the ultimate test.
With characters as captivating as those in her internationally bestselling novel Between Shades of Gray, Ruta Sepetys skillfully creates a rich story of secrets, lies, and the haunting reminder that decisions can shape our destiny.
Why I Read This:
The cover, the time period, and the setting all intrigued me.
I've never read another book by Ruta Sepetys but I've heard great things about her writing so when I saw this one I thought I'd give it a try. The book is about Josie, a 17 year old daughter of a prostitute. She's very connected to this underground world despite wanting out of it. She's a very independent girl too. She's made her way out of living with her mother and into the upper floor of a book store run by her best friend and his father.
I really liked this book! As a character, Josie really stood out to me. She was kind but at the same time tough. She didn't have to be snarky or on a quest to prove her worth. She just was. I loved being around the other characters as well. Some of them seemed very stereotypical of the time period at first, but the more you got to know them, the more complex they became. My favourite were Jesse and Patrick, of course.
I also enjoyed the murder mystery aspect to this book. Josie was just close enough to it that it was a mystery to her, yet still far enough removed that it wasn't too easy for me to figure out on my own.
Well worth the read, and I will be checking out more of Ruta Sepetys books in the future.
Disclaimer: I borrowed an ARC from a blogger friend.