Sunday, February 8, 2015

Book Challenge: A Book with Antonyms in the Title

Book: Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
Pages: 285
Date Read: 2/1-2/8/2015
Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 

Other Categories this book could 
have fit into:
A book with a love triangle - not your average love triangle, but I'd still say it counts
A book that made you cry - more on that in the review, but let's just say I could have filled buckets
A book by an author you've never read before

Nothing about this book is ok. "But, Kat!e!" you say, "You gave it five stars!" sigh Ok, this book is actually beautiful. One of the most beautiful books I have ever read. It's three o'clock in the morning, and I'm awake because I couldn't stop reading.

And now my heart is broken. Shattered into a million pieces. I have never sobbed so hard while reading a book. Thinking about it now, I'm tearing up again. I was terrified I was going to wake up my parents and they were going to come in to find me sobbing, and they'd be horrified, thinking something terrible had happened. And something terrible had happened. Just not to me. To some very dear friends of mine.

I feel like I know Henry and Keiko. Which I guess I could say about a lot of book characters, but I lived an entire lifetime with these two -- traveling back and forth between twelve and fifty, seeing the way their lives were shaped and changed. And they're so real. Everyone in this book is real. And there are so many wonderful people -- Henry and Keiko, Sheldon, Marty, Samantha, Mr. and Mrs. Okabe, Mrs. Beatty, and even Ethel. And then there are people like Henry's father, whom I'm honestly not sure I can forgive. I know I should, I know that's a lot of the point, but I just can't.

I really shouldn't be writing the review now, being sleep-deprived and emotionally broken, but I wanted to talk about these feelings while they were still raw and fresh.

This book is about such an ugly period of history. And it captures the ugliness. It's faithful to America, but it's honest about what happened, the horrible things done by Americans. War is ugly from both sides, there's no escaping it. And, I admit, I'd never really thought about the Germans and Japanese in America during the war. But now I have. And I feel like that's so important, but it also hurts really bad.

There's just so much in this little book; so much truth and pain. And then it's just about the people. About two little lives in the midst of everything that's happening.

I honestly feel like I want to own this book, to remind me of everything inside it, but I don't think I could handle ever reading it again. I was flipping through to find names, and I kept getting caught up in pieces, and I had to pull away because it hurts. And I had to give this book five stars, because any book capable of hurting me in this way is amazing.

This book is simply beautiful. And I do recommend it -- to those who are better at handling history than I am. To those who can read a sad book without it ruining their lives. Me, I'll probably spend the next week or so curled up in a ball, just sobbing. But that's ok. Sometimes it's important to hurt for someone else -- even if they are just two fictional little kids.


1 comment:

Ginny-Gin-Gin said...

Mmm, I'm so sorry to hear that it hurt you so much, but it sounds like it was a book worth reading. I'll have to add it to my list because you rated it so highly.