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Wild Awake
Hilary T. Smith
Understanding Exposure: How to Shoot Great Photographs with Any Camera
Bryan Peterson

The Last Little Blue Envelope

The Last Little Blue Envelope - Maureen Johnson 3.5 starsIn my experience, it’s a rare thing that a sequel outshines its predecessor – but this was the case for The Last Little Blue Envelope, Maureen Johnson’s funny and charming follow up to 13 Little Blue Envelopes.Straight up, I liked this book more than the first. Given the title, it’s hardly a spoiler to say that the plot revolves around that last little blue envelope entrusted to Ginny by her Aunt Peg, and the journey it causes her to embark upon. The characters, some familiar, some new, have a great dynamic and chemistry that keeps the story engaging. Ginny herself has more agency and is a less passive character throughout the second instalment of her story - I warmed to her much more as a protagonist. While still full of Maureen Johnson’s particular brand of sharp humour and witty insights, I found this book also more touching than the first. There are some genuinely earnest moments that balance out the slight suspension of belief you need to employ for parts of the plot. Also, (seriously, don’t click this unless you’re prepared to be majorly spoiled – you’ve been warned)whereas Keith kind of inspired anti-swoon in me in the first book, (again: Keith!? No, just no..) I was feeling the swoon this time! I infinitely preferred Ginny’s interactions with Oliver (and Oliver as a character in general), as opposed to Keith, who I really just wanted to punch through most of this book and the former. It was really the Ginny / Oliver development through this book that kept me page flipping.Again, The Last Little Blue Envelope was an enjoyable, compulsive read that is perfect for some couch escapism, although not really the type of book to stay with me a long time, or leave a huge, heart-rending impact. My favourite quote: “Look how his coat snaps in the wind as he walks. Very dashing. He’s like Batman.”Also – overjoyed to see that Ginny has a face now. Headless covers make me nervous.