Ah, another great read! I thoroughly enjoyed this book: an honest look at the educational options available to children today, wrapped up in teenage drama, as it ought to be.
We've all read fiction with an agenda before, and I was prepared for this to be just that, based on the title. But I was wrong. Happily wrong.
The narrator's view of homeschooling is definitely biased, but the experiences the author throws at her make for a very well-rounded view of several different schooling options. THE HOMESCHOOL LIBERATION LEAGUE is the most honest fiction I have read in years. Enjoying a story without an agenda, as you all know, is a rare thing.
Katya's voice is delightful, and sometimes delightfully absurd. She's a teenager after my own heart, who loves to use her creativity. Whether it's planning a foraged-food feast of weed-salad and barberry wine, or just convincing her parents to let her stay home from school for the next year--she is up for the challenge!
There's adventure and angst and drama in this YA book, but there's also romance. It isn't Katya's first kiss that we're experiencing, but it is her first love. And who knew violin lessons could be so steamy?
Katya is thirteen, and Lucy Frank did a fabulous job making her voice match this volatile stage of life. She's emotional and excitable, but she's also more thoughtful than her parents or teachers give her credit for. Doesn't every teenager feel misunderstood this way?
I also enjoyed the catalog of changing friendships that often happens during middle school as teenagers discover who they naturally are and who they want to be. One of Katya's friends seems especially torn between playing "the game" and being herself, a question I think most adults can still relate to their lives.
But this is a book seeping with young adult spirit. I recommend it with five stars.
NEXT READ: Aprilynne Pike's WINGS
Join me next week to discuss this YA fantasy recommended by Stephenie Meyer, author of the TWILIGHT saga.