Jessica's Reviews > The Skye in June

The Skye in June by June Ahern
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's review
Feb 25, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: first-reads, read-2010
Read in March, 2010

I won a copy of this book through the First Reads program, and am quite glad I did because it was different than any book I have read before, which is such a plus in this day of cookie cutter mass market paperbacks.

This fictional book was the story of June's immigration to San Francisco from Scotland in the early 1950's. It delved into family dynamics - from sibling rivalry issues still common today, to marital hierarchies that are rare in today's society. The book immersed the reader in 1950's and '60's culture, which was just fascinating to me, because my mom was just about June's age throughout the course of the book. It gave me a wonderful insight into what her generation experienced, felt, and how women were pigeon-holed during this time. The book touched on stereotypes of women attending college; gender preference stereotyping; racial/skin-color stereotyping, and the blacklisting of Catholic school students who did not behave perfectly.

June was one of these children who was "blacklisted" as a pagan for questioning her teachers/nuns, about religion. Her father was perhaps her worst critic. He expected perfection from his daughters and wife, and refused to accept any less. The story follows her father's verbal and physical abuse of his family, and her mother's lack of intervention. Everyone looked at June as a troubled child because she had a special ability to see and hear things others could not. This clairvoyance and clairaudio was a special gift, although during these decades in history, it was not seen as anything other than a severe mental illness.

June was labeled a very disturbed child, a "witch" according to her father. She was so passionate about this gift that she went to any and every length to keep it an active part of her day-to-day life. Try as she did, she could not, at the insistence of her teachers and parents, get rid of the thoughts, visions, and voices that she heard throughout her entire life in America.

I was born and raised a Catholic, and really enjoyed hearing about some of the history behind Catholic education in America in the '50's and '60's...things they certainly didn't teach us in Catechism classes.

Great ending! I will not say more about this because I would not want to spoil the book for anyone. Strongly recommend.
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Reading Progress

03/06/2010 page 1
03/09/2010 page 71
19.19% "I like it so far."
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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message 1: by Karen (new)

Karen Congrats!

Jessica Thank you! :)

message 3: by Brittany (new) - added it

Brittany Sounds like an awesome book. I'll have to put it on my to be read list.

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