Laurel's Reviews > The Lions of Little Rock

The Lions of Little Rock by Kristin Levine
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Jul 24, 12

bookshelves: to-read

I fear my experience of this book suffered, because I'd just finished The Only and One Ivan.

I liked it. A lot. But I didn't love it.

I thought the history was well handled, the characters pretty real in most ways. I liked the friendship at the center of the book. And I liked that we got to see a full cast of characters, therefore a range of reactions to integration.

But the prose wasn't that special, and the ways in which the book tried to do "more" felt forced to me. The conceit of a kid who doesn't speak finding her voice felt heavy handed, and I didn't buy it altogether. And that, plus her reliance on math for emotional stability made me think there should have been more going on. I wondered if maybe we were supposed to read her as OCD. But then she was fixed, ta dah!

Likewise, the sudden awakening of several secondary characters felt too easy.

This was a tough topic, and I admired the attempt. I think the topic was deftly handled. I guess I didn't feel like the character development got the same level of attention.
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