Monday, April 6, 2009

Ruby's Slippers by Leanna Ellis

While I would consider myself a strong fan of Leanna Ellis, it took me a little longer to get into the flow of RUBY'S SLIPPERS.

Still, that's not to say this book didn't hold me in it's grip. The beginning throws you right there into the tornado with Dottie and her little dog Otto. The chapters are short, the language is jumpy, Dottie is fading in and out of consciousness. Through her recovery, I felt very tied to Dottie's emotions. Her sense of confusion, her desire to be back where life was normal, her growing love for the friends and security the home provides. Because of this, I felt just as wary as Dottie to step outside and follow through with the rest of her trials and travels.

Ellis writes with a simple, clean, light style the pulls you along. However, the bits with Dottie's sister felt way too rushed, the relationship not as fleshed out as it could have been to convey a finer sense of what each sister's motivations were for the family. The theme of The Wizard of Oz, while very prevalent, was not overly forced in. Ellis skillfully weaves elements and icons from the famous movie into her own plot-lines, managing to create a finely woven bond rather than a straight up comparison between the two. The major themes felt similar to the previous two books by Ellis, but the situations and voices were much more stark.

I look forward to what Ellis has in store for us next!

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