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One Degree of Freedom

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4.74  ·  Rating details ·  46 ratings  ·  18 reviews
Fifteen-year-old Adriana Nicu lives in the sheltered world of Bucharest, Romania, in the year 1987. Under the rule of Communist president Nicolae Ceaușescu, citizens of Bucharest live with the eyes and ears of the government ever present. Adriana’s future, which will involve becoming an engineer, is locked in against her will.

During a visit to her aunt’s apartment, Adriana
...more
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Published November 17th 2020 by Illuminate YA Fiction
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Average rating 4.74  · 
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 ·  46 ratings  ·  18 reviews


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Michele Morin
May 20, 2021 rated it it was amazing
YA Fiction is not my usual genre, but this coming of age tale set deep in the Soviet satellite nation of Romania during the Cold War was not only riveting but also inspiring. One Degree of Freedom includes all the usual fifteen-year-old conflicts–grades and career choices, friendship drama, parent/child tension–but they are ratcheted up a notch when the Communist Party is watching your every move and any indiscretion may put you and your family in mortal danger!

Adriana is a strong protagonist, b
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Susan
Nov 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thanks to the author for an advance digital copy of this book. All comments and opinions are my own.

This YA novel had a thought-provoking story, complex characters, and was so suspenseful that I read it in one day. It beautifully incorporates books that were banned in Romania at the time, that were some of my favorites growing up.

It opened my eyes to how difficult life was in Romania as recently as the late 1980’s. The beautiful rich descriptions of Peles Castle and grandmother’s village contra
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Andrea Nyberg
Dec 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I couldn’t put it down!!! I’ve traveled to Romania on two occasions and felt like I was transported back through Taryn’s brilliant novel. There is rich history seeded into the story, so not only was I entertained by the personalities and backstory of the characters, I was educated on a dark season in Romania’s past. Yet hope arose and love abounded, even in the most difficult of circumstances. I highly recommend this wonderful work of young adult fiction!
Phyllis
Thanks to the author for an advance digital copy of this book. All comments and opinions are my own.

Beautiful book cover, endearing young protagonist, government spies, and classic novels. I was hooked from the first page of this multi-layered story. Fifteen-year-old Adriana lives in Communist Romania in 1987, and despite the oppressive political climate and restrictive lifestyle she is a bubbly teenager with a love of reading. Unaware of the political and religious secrets within her own family
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Taryn Hutchison
Nov 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: ya-and-mg
In answer to Goodreads' question if I liked this book, I have to let you know that I'm the author. Of course I'm not in the least bit biased, but I think you should read it. I also think that when you do, you'll love it! ...more
Hope
Nov 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
To me, a mark of an excellent novel is that you completely forget you are reading. One Degree of Freedom was such a novel—with nuanced, engaging characters, intricately described setting, and exciting plot, I was entranced from page one. Late 1980s Communist Romania was a fascinating backdrop for the story of Adriana, a fifteen-year old engineering student who finds a window to the world outside her oppressive regime through reading banned books, an activity which sends her headlong into an adve ...more
Lailey
Jan 26, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Enchanting, and captivating, One Degree of Freedom is a novel I could not put down. Taryn R. Hutchison transports readers into 1980’s Romania with visceral clarity and hope-filled resonance. Fans of classic authors like Louisa May Alcott and current YA historical greats, like Stephanie Morrill will fall in love with Hutchison’s honest and sincere voice.

Mrs Jeanne Brandt
A surprise ending

This book made me realize what a gift of freedom we have here in America. Communism is worse than I thought. I have a friend who escaped from Romania and this book is very factual.
Beth Westcott
Mar 24, 2021 rated it really liked it
Historical fiction set in communist Romania, a totalitarian regime, in 1987, the author has pulled together Romanian history, classics of literature, and the experiences of fifteen-year-old Adriana Nicu, as she explores personal freedom and the choices she must make for the sake of those she loves- her family and friends- and for her country.
Cheryl Bostrom
Oct 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Nothing short of outstanding!
Suspenseful, tightly plotted, and conceptually accurate, One Degree of Freedom dropped me into Ceaușescu's Romania via authentic, engaging protagonist Adriana and a host of well-drawn characters, all of whom made me yearn for their safety in that repressive regime and celebrate their resiliency and love. The author portrayed effects of freedom—and the loss of it—on the nation, communities, families and individuals with clarity that will give every reader pause. Engag
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Kelly Smith
Feb 17, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a timely book for both teens and adults. One becomes closely acquainted and connected with Adrianna and her family and the challenges they face as they live in communist Romania in the 1980's. The suspense builds in the latter part of the story and resolves some but leaves you in anticipation of Taryn's next installment. ...more
Dorothy Greco
Oct 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Well-written, YA novel with lots of levels. Hutchinson is an engaging writer and has created an intriguing plot with nuanced characters. (The female characters are strong and smart.) The novel takes place in Romania just before the fall of communism, adding a layer of complexity and interest to the work. The book gets increasingly intense as it moves forward. There is one violent scene toward the end and (thankfully) no sex. One Degree was so compelling that I read it in two afternoons!
Charity Craig
Nov 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This story pulled me into its secrets and hiding places and wouldn’t let me go. One Degree of Freedom is an intriguing page turner, with characters I’m still thinking about. I also loved the setting — Communist Romania in the 80’s — probably because I’m a child of the latter years of the Cold War myself. I even remember when Ceaușescu‘s reign ended. If you like historical fiction with a healthy dose of spy craft and teenage angst, this book is for you!
Leah
Dec 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As a lover of historic fiction and young adult novels this book really ticked both boxes for me. I appreciated the glimpse into a country I know very little about during the 1980s. It was fascinating to try to imagine living under such a strict regime and as I related very much to the main character as both a lover of books and a daughter of parents who wanted me to choose math/science, it wasn't hard to put myself in Adriana's shoes.

I highly recommend this book!
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Cynthia
May 17, 2021 rated it it was amazing
"One Degree of Freedom" is a captivating story that immerses the reader in a suspenseful, intriguing, and fascinating journey into the world of Adriana, a young woman living in communist, pre-revolutionary Romania. Author Taryn Hutchison draws characters that engage the spirit. Adrianna will pull you along as she does her Bunica from Bucharest to the villages of the Transylvanian alps on her breathtaking quest. She deftly creates for the reader the mood, the landscapes and cityscapes, and the es ...more
Sharla Fritz
Apr 30, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Taryn Hutchison's novel captured my attention from the beginning and held it to the end. I knew little about Romania and so this story drew me in just because I wanted to understand that period of history. But the characters Hutchison created made this read all the more compelling. Throughout the book, I rooted for Adriana as she discovered the love of reading and despaired with her when it seemed that joy was taken away. But the book isn't simply a history lesson or a sweet coming-of-age story, ...more
Mary Payne
Mar 31, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One Degree of Freedom.

An amazing book to read. It illustrates the communist rule of Romania through the eyes of a schoolgirl. It's hard to imagine people lived like that in my lifetime. It's a fascinating story that had me holding my breath at times.
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Wendy Kohman
Jun 01, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I loved One Degree of Freedom! Transported back to Cold War Romania, I got swept up in the plot. Adriana’s discoveries and interactions kept me turning the pages, eager to see what would happen next!
Jeanette Morris
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Taryn R. Hutchison's latest book, YA historical fiction, was released In November 2020. She hails from a town on the Eastern Shore of Maryland with a booming population of 75 people, three million chickens, several dogs, and her two imaginary friends. Taryn loves people, art, storytelling, and travel. She’s visited all 50 states, lots of countries, and every continent except Antarctica - having li ...more

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