GENRE: Young Adult; Historical Fiction
PUBLISHER: Published February 12th 2013 by Philomel Books (first published 2013)
Blurb: 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 to 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. (Provided by Goodreads)
Out of the Easy is a captivating story about a girl named Josie whose life metamorphosed from a series of misfortunes and despondency to a blooming hope. Her story tells about her struggle to escape the nightmare of the Quarter and her conquest to achieve her own literary pursuits outside New Orleans. Josie was pressed against by many unfortunate events and barricaded with rather lampooning people that only spurred her to become the absolute extreme of her mother.
I praise the Author for molding such astonishingly brave and inspiring character that has a deep appreciation for poetry and who outflows her own wellspring. Josie perfectly cultivated the image of “Girl Against the World”. Her story teaches that impossibilities and fears are only a product of a mind that always thinks big things are unattainable.
In the beginning was the depiction of a complacent Josie who behaves in accordance with her mother’s bidding. As she grows up, she starts the routine of becoming the girl in the background while her superiors throw reprimands and orders to her from the front seat. The same people who antagonize her and hurdle her dreams: her mother, Louise, a prostitute, who I think epitomizes stupidity and crazy; Cincinnati who only reinforces Louise’s ulterior motives; and Willie, the realistic and ill-tempered madam.
Out of the Easy also dignified the people of low class in this story who are apparently associated with illiteracy, ignorance, crimes and treated as commodities that can always be purchased. These reservation and association can be seen in the character of the whores, Cokie and Sadie; and Sepety’s used the Lockwells to reveal the grimes and filth of the upper class.
I was inspired by the bravery and dignity of the characters as I was moved by its edge-of-the-seat and inspiring story. Ruta Sepetys’s story has the kind of struggle that does not only exist in thick pages; of mystery that is thrilling–hers is realistic. She fed readers more suspicions, sense of dejection and hope in every turn of page. The story line is also unpredictable: its flow and transition exposed the highs and lows that Josie has gone through and the brevity of her desperation in the denouement will stir excitement to readers –only anticipating them with the ending.
As I finished this, I came up with a theory that this story is a paradox: In order to become happy someone has to go through sadness; to be able to attain your desires someone has to sacrifice; but most of all, in order to have new beginnings, some things have to end.