13 Little Blue Envelopes by Maureen Johnson
Genre: Young Adult
Acquired: Library Book
Book of Your Shelf? No
Why I read it: 2011 Book Battle
Series: Blue Envelopes (1)
Ginny has a mission....a mission enclosed in 13 blue envelopes given to her by her Aunt with specific instructions on when and where she is to open each one. After much internal and parental debate, Ginny sets of on a grand adventure that begins in London. As Ginny works her way through the letters, Europe, and a steady stream of extremely helpful strangers, she begins to see her Aunt through different eyes and gains a better understanding of herself.
I really liked Ginny. She was shy with strangers but outgoing once she let you into her world. As she traveled and interacted with new, and sometimes very strange, people Ginny discovered that she was capable of doing so much more than she originally thought. A journey that Ginny first thought was all about "discovering" who her Aunt was, turns into so much more.
I enjoyed this book up until almost the very end. The places and people were engaging and lifelike. Even in what would normally be a mundane scene, the author managed to write in a way to bring out the excitement and anticipation that Ginny must have been feeling throughout the whole story. Now, the very end was a little different. I was all set to have things wrap up nicely and, well, end. But the story is set up for a sequel, which I didn't realize when I started. The ending wasn't cliffhanger enough to make me jump out of my seat and rush off to the library, but it was enough to leave me feeling frustrated that I couldn't just move on. Perhaps that was the point, and it's quite possible I would feel differently if I had known there was a book 2 going in.