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Letters in the Attic
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Letters in the Attic

3.57 of 5 stars 3.57  ·  rating details  ·  63 ratings  ·  15 reviews
A crossover young adult-mainstream novel that was published to great acclaim in 2002. This is the first time in paperback. Lizzy McMann, the narrator, is a feisty 12-year-old who moves to a new town with her Mother, recently divorced, and experiences puberty and teenage love, including falling for a 13-year-old girl down the street who is dyslexic, smokes, and looks just l ...more
ebook, 161 pages
Published May 1st 2012 by Academy Chicago Publishers (first published 2002)
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This is historical fiction set in the early 1960's and at the same time, a coming of age story for 12 year old Elizabeth (Lizzy) McMann.

Lizzy has spent most of her life looking after her mother. When Manny, who she thinks is her father, leaves them, Lizzy and her mother end up in a small town in New York State living with previously unknown grandparents. It is a mixed blessing. Her grampa is loving and supportive, but her grandma is filled with bitterness and bile.

Ridgewood, New York, is fille
When 7th grader Lizzy McMann’s father announces he wants a divorce, leaving her and her mother both homeless and penniless, they are forced to move from Phoenix to upstate New York where are they taken in by Lizzy’s maternal grandparents. Once there, Lizzy becomes friends with and develops feelings for her 8th grade neighbor, the beautiful and dramatic Eva Singer.

A rich, layered story about growing up that depicts relationships, friendships, and developing self-knowledge in complex, poignant, h
Shimko's Letters in the Attic was a very good young adult read. The plot focuses very much on the constant changes and growing relationships in Elizabeth McMann's life as she moves from Arizona to upstate NY with her mother. From meeting her best friend Eva Singer, realizing that something is just a little different about herself when it comes to her sexual orientation, helping her mother readjust to life in her childhood home, Elizabeth's life has changed eventually for the better.

The book is
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Marta Morrison for

I really enjoyed reading LETTERS IN THE ATTIC, set in the early sixties.

Lizzy, the heroine, lives with her mom and dad in a Phoenix hotel. Her father comes in, a real sleezeball, and with his new girlfriend in tow, proceeds to tell her mother that he is divorcing her. He even has the gall to ask Vonnie, her mother, to apologize to his girlfriend because she isn't being nice.

Well, with no place to go home to, they head to upstate New York to Vonnie
For me, classifying this as an LGBT novel is a bit of a stretch. The story line seems more focused on the mother, rather than the "coming-of-age" adolescent protagonist. Lizzy is only 12 in this novel and at the beginning does not understand her life. When she is forced to live with the "evil grandmother" and the loving grandfather, while her mother tries to figure out her life, Lizzie falls in love with her best friend.

The pacing of the novel is rather slow. This is a steady-paced novel, with n

This book was fine. It's a simple, nice story, and nothing really surprising happened. It was the voice and tone (as if an actual, smart seventh grader wrote it - but complete with the unevenness and unnecessary adjectives and metaphors that author would choose) that failed to draw me in. Especially compared with The Age of Miracles, which was told in the voice of a seventh grader grown up, looking back from an indeterminate future, and which I read concurrently with this, Letters in the Attic
Dr Penner
There’s no question to why Letters in the Attic was so well received when it was first published back in 2002. After recently reading the novel for the first time, I am shocked it took me this long to find out about it. I’m a huge fan of Young Adult novels and Letters in the Attic seemed to fit that mold and then some. Lizzy McMann is a great character and one easily relatable even from a male perspective. Props to Bonnie Shimko for a fantastic read.
This was a wonderful read! Lizzy is a great narrator, and Bonnie Shimko a masterful storyteller. This book takes a fresh look at the awkward age of adolescence, and I found myself fiercely invested in Lizzy's journey as she tries to balance the ache of new love with the pressures of fitting in, and the need to take care of her dependent mother. The characters are quirky, the issues are real, and Lizzy McMann shines through it all.
This thin volume is deceptive because it packs a lot of punch. This coming of age story is painfully rendered and deals with very deep and intense subject matter, not expected in young adult literature. I found the protagonist Lizzie McMann's struggles endearing and her courage very inspirational.
Mr. Woods Woods
I have to say this is another young adult novel I found and absolutely love. This book deals with a young character and her disfunctional family as well as sexual identity issues she faces. The story is both humorous and sad quite a good read!
Katie M.
The fact that the two reviews on this book's cover are by Emily Saliers and Betty DeGeneres really tells you far more about this book than I ever could. Mostly it was fine, I'm just not a fan of coming-of-age stories.
Courtney Ali
i thought this was really good. it tells about a thirteen year old about her family and finding out her real father is.
Sep 02, 2009 Shayla rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Shayla by: I found it at the library
This book isn't terrible. But it's not terrific, either. It's well-written fluff.
Definitely think this should have been classed as YA fiction, but it was ok.

loved loved loved. loved.
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