Letters for Scarlet is a novel by Julie Gardner.
[I got this book from a LibraryThing Early Reviewer Give-Away. I am not early with my review, but honest.]
Finished on: 18.9.2018
When they were teenagers, Corie and Scarlet were best friends, basically inseperable. Now 28, Corie finds a graduation letter she wrote and completely forget about. Having to face her past, she is confronted again with what happened to her and Scarlet and Tucker. Meanwhile Scarlet also has to face facts: she is pregnant and pretty certain that she will be a horrible mother who deserves nothing good. Through letters both of them explore feelings, both old and new, they haven’t figured out yet.
Letters for Scarlet is a nice, quick read that something was a bit much for me and that I didn’t entirely love. But I enjoyed it for the most part.
In general, I like epistolary novels, so that was already a big bonus for Letters for Scarlet to begin with – and Gardner nicely executes it. Both Corie and Scarlet were clearly characterized and easy to empathize with. Obviously a lot of work went into them to make them understood and to understand them.
The story slowly unfolds through the letters, filling in the backstory bit by bit. There was one bit of backstory that felt a bit much to me: [SPOILER] the little brother’s death [/SPOILER]. In that case I think that less would have been more.
And the ending was a bit frustrating in its happiness because it felt so damn conservative to me: [SPOILER] both women ultimately have perfect little families with biological children. Would it have hurt the happiness if Corie realized that she could be happy without children or if Scarlet found the love of her life in a man who wasn’t her child’s father? I don’t think so – but it would have opened up the floor for other ideas of family as good and happy and I would have appreciated that a lot. [/SPOILER]
But despite these misgivings, I did enjoy the book. I read it quickly and was engaged. And while it may not be one that will stay with me for a long time, it was good while it lasted.
Summarizing: Mostly sweet.