Out of the Easy

Out of the EasyIt 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 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.

1 New York Times Bestselling Author and Winner of the Carnegie Medal.Ruta Sepetys was born and raised in Michigan in a family of artists, readers, and music lovers The daughter of a refugee, Ruta is drawn to underrepresented stories of strength through struggle and hopes to give voice to those who weren t able to tell their story Her award winning historical novels are published in over fifty c

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  • Hardcover
  • 348 pages
  • Out of the Easy
  • Ruta Sepetys
  • English
  • 13 February 2017
  • 9780399256929

10 thoughts on “Out of the Easy

  1. says:

    4.5If you d asked me about historical fiction two years ago, I would have told you it wasn t my thing It had long been a genre that just didn t appeal to me But, after discovering goodreads and getting awesome recommendations as well as hearing about books I would otherwise never have known about, I ve ran into a series of books that have proved I was wrong about this genre From the bright lights and dazzling atmosphere of Libba Bray s 1920s supernatural murder mystery The Diviners to the character driven story of a Wales occupied by England The Wicked and the Just to a creepy ghost story set at the time of the First World War In the Shadow of Blackbirds and now this.I confess that I was one of the few people who struggled to fully appreciate Between Shades of Gray I know, I suck but I had no such problem with Ruta Sepetys second novel and I think I finally understand what it was about the first that failed for me and why this one delivered the characters Both are character driven novels and even though there were numerous threats to the characters survival in Between Shades of Gray, the plot is slow moving and your ability to enjoy it depends on some connection with the characters I lacked this My cold heart felt nothing than the general human sympathy we all typically feel for others who suffer When people died it was sad because, you know, it s sad when people die, not because I really cared about the characters.Out of The Easy is similar in that the characters are the main focus and the plot is slowly built around them But these characters I loved so so much Or loathed, but either will keep me interested in a novel s outcome The setting is 1950s New Orleans and the protagonist is the teenage daughter of a prostitute and possibly the worst mother ever Josie longs to escape from The Big Easy and go to college but she is forever being pulled back by her mother and her ties to the brothel where she works as housekeeper Sepetys introduces a number of lively and colourful characters into this story, from the fierce and wonderful Willie who runs the brothel to the shameless and hilarious Dora who works there.The patriarchal hierarchy of women puts such lusty wenches as these right down at the bottom and it is common to picture a prostitute as a tragic and doomed character like Fantine from Les Mis rables For Sepetys to take such an interesting look into the lives and dealings of prostitutes and to show them as strong, funny and oddly empowered women really made me love this book I don t mean that she portrays prostitution as in any way a good profession, these women would much rather be somewhere else, of course they would But she portrays them as human beings who have been dealt a bad hand in life and, instead of falling into a pit of despair, they have taken control of their lives, doing what they have to in order to survive It is incredibly effective and I was all the angry at the people who sneered at them because of it.This book is one which is at times very funny or heartwarming and at others sad and frustrating in a good way It is frustrating to be inside Josie s head and have to deal with her mother, it is frustrating when people expect Josie to never achieve anything just because of where she came from But it is a good frustrating because you care so much The dialogue is also fantastic and I laughed out loud several times and teared up towards the end Very, very good I am so pleased I gave this author another chance.

  2. says:

    This started out really strong, but around the halfway point it really started losing steam Still enjoyable overall, but I got very bored near the end I was having a hard time articulating exactly why I didn t love this book, and I came across the review that described my feelings perfectly

  3. says:

    OUT OF THE EASY is another fantastic piece of writing by the stupendous Ruta Sepetys, aka the only historical fiction writer to make my list of top favourite authors.With a mostly absent and selfish prostitute as a mother, Josie s life has never been exactly easy The title is, therefore, very much ironic Josie is a good girl who wants a good education and a good life, out of the city of New Orleans which, so far, only filled her heart with disappointments But if she can t receive a scholarship, she ll be stuck in a life she wishes would be different until she meets her creator Though we re clearly aware of the fact that this is a historical novel from the way the people were thinking and living in 1950s New Orleans, the point of this book is not to tell you how things were back in the day, although that s part of it, but rather make you experience, through the lovely Josie, the life of a teenage girl with big dreams in a city that plans to suck the life out of her.More showing than telling And that s so very great, because I can t recall the number of times I ve been disappointed with a book because of its annoying tendency to tell instead of to show which, incidentally, works much better than the former on so many levels It s simply a pleasure to read Miss Sepethys novels I don t worry about being flooded with information or having to put on my intelligence glasses to decipher what she says She writes like she breaths Effortlessly.And with an admirable elegance.Blog Youtube Twitter Instagram Google Bloglovin

  4. says:

    If I have had dark rings under my eyes at lunch today, it will was probably be because it s 6AM and I spent the whole night reading Oops Now, how could I have resisted Out of the Easy is so damn charming Wonderful settings, a flawed MC who makes mistakes but stays very relatable and likeable, secondary characters so lovable and true to life Willie, Coky, Jesse, I want to hug them all , I couldn t stop reading, even if the mystery part was really predictable and a little ludicrous Now, if you would excuse me, I m gonna say hello good buy to my coffee maker that just became my new best friend Trop de caf tue le caf .PS There s a sort of a love triangle, and you know what I didn t mind one bit, because 1 the romance part was never overwhelming 2 for once, I found it believable and understandable 3 I was very pleased with the outcome Therefore I may be exhausted, but I m smiling SO big, it was worth it still worth every second of this very long day

  5. says:

    I m reading Out of the Easy exactly a year after reading Between Shades of Gray Sadly, the experience was as far and distinct as the setting in the two books I was disappointed to say the least Out of the Easy missed nearly every mark and lacked all the heartbreaking finesse we found in her first novel Not that there isn t an emotional hook the subject matter, while not as ambitious as Between Shades of Gray, is one that could lift the spirit, offer all the grandiose hope we look for in art of all venues Out of the Easy is about Josie She is the daughter of a prostitute, she lives in the Quarter, she works alternately between the bookshop and the brothel, and she is smart She is smart and determined and optomistic She dreams of attending college and finally getting out of dirty, wicked New Orleans I see a pattern in Sepetys writing young women with a strong will and an inner compass they steer to get them to a better place Inspiring The idea is wonderful and I hope it s a pattern that continues But life is a journey, not a destination, yes And this book s journey is just simplyflat Reading Out of the Easy gave me the distinct feeling of going through the motions This is a quick read, the chapters come and go in a blink of an eye And I felt as if every scene was written and included because it is the formula I think I ve figured out my problem with Sepetys there just isn t enough I felt that way with Between Shades of Gray and I feel it even potently now She doesn t given enough information, enough background, enough action, enoug of anything Josie is a girl who has been made fun of all her life yet we don t really experience this alienation Sure, some people turn away from her in a couple of scenes but not enough Josie is supposed to be intelligent, a true scholar yet the only factors to explore this is her desire to attend school and her job in the bookshop We see her badly wanting to be admitted but I would ve liked to see her be the scholar, be this girl that is being described There is a love triangle sort of and Josie s reactions to both boys seem off and abrupt because again we are not given enough of her relationship with either boy to understand how or why she reacts the way she does And with Josie herself I never really got her She seemed an Everyman reacting to the situations she s put in Like she was a manifestation of all of us within the book and all she did was choose the path that would appease us all She wasn t her own person She didn t have quirks that made her solid and memorable She was bread On a positive note, the clouds did occasionally part and I caught glimpses of the writer I loved all those months ago There were sudden slices of sincere heartache, ones that finally had me rooting for Josie Slices, however, and sudden There were also some colourful side characters but then, aren t they all Anyway, they got me through Some of them Oh, and New Orleans I think Sepetys did a fair enough job of transporting readers into this old, mythic, succulent and sinful place It could ve been effecting but I will say that it was one of my lesser complaints.So it was disappointment I eventually found myself skimming near the end I m not giving up, though because I have this feeling that if Sepetys is inspired enough, and really, truly driven to tell a story of relevance as I think was the case with Between Shades of Gray not so much with Out of the Easy , I think it will be marvelous Maybe next January See you then This review also appears on The Midnight Garden An advance copy was provided by the publisher.Note This review was made possible by Wendy Thank you, Darling.

  6. says:

    Wow I mean wow This book was so captivating This book is all about this quote from the book, Decisions, they shape our destiny And this book tells you that in any given circumstance, whatever life deals you, in the end it s YOUR choice of how you want to shape who you are and make your life The author was able to bring to life with the descriptions and vivid details of the New Orleans during a rough time Not only did she barely touch on the Uptown families, she thoroughly devoted most of the book towards the underground and hidden slums of New Orleans in the 1950 s Times and places we didn t focus on during that time or realize were truly there She was so descriptive I couldn t put it down The main character Josie is an amazing character who always sought for something MORE from this life, she sought and new and better way of living She is the seventeen year old daughter of a French Quarter prostitute She knew what she was surrounded with and knew it wasn t right She was able to escape through books as she works in a book store, and the kindness of others that sheltered her as best they could from what she could have easily succumbed to.Josie love the name is smart and well read, independent, gutsy, even knows how to shoot a gun, witty Josie also works at her mother s brothel for Willie, the madam and cleans up the messes after parties and such So Josie is exposed to that sort of life constantly and sees what that sort of life is I absolutely loved Willie even though she was rough around the edges She s ballsy and doesn t take crap from nobody Willie keeps her away from ever becoming a prostitute but also can t see beyond her own world I so badly wanted to know about her and what was her story You get to learn a little just enough to satisfy you but there is such and intense desire to know about HER There s also a whole slew of other characters that you just love Cokie, Willie s driver, Patrick, Josie s best friend and co worker at the bookstore I loved this book I really did It was amazing and beautifully written and I thought it was tasteful especially when dealing with this topic and era Sexual Content moderate heavy Violence mildLanguage moderate I think Drugs Alcohol mild

  7. says:

    www.melissa413readsalot.blogspot.comI wasn t sure I was going to like this book, but I was pleasantly surprised that I did I fell in love with so many characters in the book I felt so bad for Josie having a mother who was a prostitute and didn t care for her at all The brothel her mom was living in was owned by a woman named Willie and I really loved her Willie s character was of a good woman, even though she ran a brothel She was kind to those that needed to be kind to and put people right in their place if they needed that as well I loved the fact that she became of a mom to Josie than Josie s real mom She taught her how to shoot guns and use her head She gave her a job as a cleaner, unfortunately this involved cleaning up after all of the women after the fact the next day Ewww For some reason, I kept picturing Willie as the character from one of my favorite movies, Spirited Away I kept picturing Yubaba when I read anything about Willie LoL The book is set in 1950 s New Orleans as you can read in the blurb Josie lived above a bookstore that she also worked in, she lived there since she was a little girl of 12 The owner and author Charlie was very kind to her, she also worked with Charlie s son Patrick who was like a brother to her Josie s mom is trouble with a capital T She seems to be in on stealing, murders, drugs and who knows what all else.Josie meets a nice man that comes into the bookstore She likes him because he seems like a really nice person and it seems there s not too many men like that aroundbut..he gets murdered and this really upsets Josie, there is a lot to it but I won t get into that Josie decides she wants to try to get into a prestigious college away from New Orleans and does some really smart things to try to help her get there Josie has had so many let downs in her life There is another character I love in the book, it s Cokie, he is Willie s driver He loves driving around in Willie s Caddy He is a really sweet character Some of the girls at the brothel are very sweet to Josie too There is also a nice guy named Jesse that I had a crush on and it seemed Josie did too The characters in this book are rich in detail and the way the author weaves the story makes you think your right there with Josie The ending was sad and brought tears to my eyes. well a few things brought tears to my eyes. tears of sadness and tears of happiness I was all over the place with this review, but Lord, I was trying my best not to give out spoilers I have a hard time with that, I would liked to have talked in detail about people and what all went on, I will just say read the book I look forward to reading books by this author as this was my first by her

  8. says:

    Reading Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys lead me to conclude that there aren t enough YA books set in a the 1950 s and b New Orleans And yet, only a writer of Sepetys skill and confidence could have successfully written such a story Out of the Easy is a murder mystery first, a coming of age story second, and about twenty other things in between It is a story of great complexity, and yet paradoxically, it is also a very simple one With Out of the Easy, Sepetys confirmed that she s not merely a writer of YA historical fiction, but that she s a Writer and that she measures up to the very best She is able to make her authorial voice completely invisible, thus allowing her characters to fully form and take center stage.Out of the Easy rose from its pages to create a story that unfolded right in front of my eyes, like a play than anything else I wasn t a reader, not exactly Sepetys had allowed me to become a spectator instead All I had to do was sit back and watch as the setting materialized in front of me into a full audio visual and olfactory experience The characters weren t far behind As soon as Josie Moraine spoke her first sentence My mother s a prostitute , I knew we were going to get along, and we did Each of us has wanted to be someone else somewhere else at least once in our lives, but for Josie, it s a matter of survival All she ever wanted was to be normal, to be able to live and learn like everyone else, without her mother s constant malicious meddling Josie s voice was clear as bell, and she spoke to me until her problems became my problems and her heartache my heartache as well Willie said normal was boring and that I should be grateful that I had a touch of spice She said no one cared about boring people, and when they died, they were forgotten, like something that slips behind the dresser Sometimes I wanted to slip behind the dresser Being normal sounded perfectly wonderful. But Josie was not alone each of the characters was so unique, so alive and vibrant that they completely took over the story and left their author far behind Or so it seemed This is where Ruta Sepetys skill truly shows Her writing style is so clear, so completely transparent that it never gets in the way of the story This ability or rather a choice makes even the characters emotions seem genuine, not forced or manipulated, but as real as yours or mine It s best that you go into this book knowing as little as possible, not because it hides some staggering surprise, but because its beauty is almost impossible to put into words The only way is to experience everything for yourself, and if you ask me, that s exactly what you should do.

  9. says:

    How many college girls cleaned cathouses I was watching a show on t.v today and heard the over used phrase You can t have your cake and eat it too, to which I replied, Why not When in the history of ever has someone had the dilemma of being given a piece of cake which they weren t allowed to eat dietetic reasons don t count Why would you ever want to have a piece of cake if you couldn t eat it I have to go with Marie Antoinette and her stance of letting people eat cakeor not, as it turns out that she didn t really say this.What does my book review have to do with cake, you ask New Orleans was the cake that I wanted to eat but never got to Out of the Easy should have delivered on the promise of New Orleans A few mentions of brick dust it s a voodoo thing , Mardi Gras, and dropping the names of famous streets, struggled to fully cement the atmosphere of life at a brothel in the Big Easy during the mid twentieth century I longed to be a part of the surroundings and never quite felt like I made it there in full capacity.Since this wasn t a setting driven book, we re left to look at the styles of story driven and character driven I would consider Out of the Easy to be a little bit of both, but if I had to pick a stronger point, I d be likely to fall on the character driven side The cast of characters were an eclectic bunch From the snappy madam to the kindly driver, each person had a certain quality which made them unique You re named after a madam I m named after a murderer Mine s worse There were offbeat characters There was a murder mystery There were the obstacles of prejudice to overcome There was the the tale of a woman coming of age, and how she had to learn to make her own way in the world, outside of her mother s stigma as a prostitute.I first fell in love with Ruta Sepetys writing with her now well known book Between Shades of Gray, which was absolutely brilliant and showcased the passion that one writer could have in wanting to bring a hidden story to life she went on her own pilgrimage to find out the history of her people in order to write the book Even though I appreciated and enjoyed Sepetys effort with Out of the Easy, I think I mentally set the bar high in hoping that this book would equal my strong feelings for BSOG While I found Out of the Easy an engaging read, I don t know if I ever fully attached to the story in the way I would have liked to.Even so, I still have so much love for her style of writing I m pretty sure that I d read anything this author put out there She has this way of drawing you in through beautiful prose and small hints of things to come With both of her books, there was an underlying message of holding on to hope The reader wants to hope for for these characters.Jo wanted to get Out of the Easy I wanted her to get out as well This is why I kept reading, to see if she could make her dreams reality I still don t know if I want to go 3 or 4 on the rating If it changes, my apologies.

  10. says:

    The only reason I d lift my skirt is to pull out my pistol and plug you in the head 1950, New Orleans Josie, the daughter of a heartless and uncaring brothel prostitute dreams of escaping the Big Easy, and going to college She wants nothing than to start fresh, and leave behind the whispers that follow her every waking stepJosie is one of the strongest YA heroines I ve ever come across She moved way from home into an apartment on top of a bookshop at the sheer age of 11, and now at the age of 17 works there Her cruel and selfish mother neglects her, steals from her, and obsesses over a abusive man that reeks of trouble But, despite all of this, Josie is not one to dwell on her misfortunes, instead she soldiers on, determined to one day achieve her dreams Out of The Easy features a colourful cast of characters My favourite character by far, though, has to be Willie, the madame of the brothel I think this description wicked stepmother with the fairy godmother heart fits her well Despite her ice y exterior, she cares deeply for Josie She was a brilliant, if not unconventional mother figure.Jesse, with his leather jacket and motorbike quickly won me over His quiet and shy demeanour slowly gives way to an intelligent and charming young man The blossoming romance between Jesse and Josie is very subtle, it develops at a steady place and is honestly just down right swoon worthy I appreciated Sepetys portrayal of the prostitutes, she shows that they re not tragic, bitter characters, instead they re just like us they have feelings and do what they have to do to survive Strong, funny, and caring these women oddly found a place in my heart.I never would have picked this up before I became a book blogger YA historical fiction is just one of the many genres that book blogging has introduced me to, and for that I am grateful Out of The Easy is a beautiful, heart wrenching story that has quickly made it to my favourites shelf This review also appears on my blog, The Page Turner.

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