My Long List of Impossible Things by Michelle Barker

 My Long List of Impossible Things by Michelle Barker, Annick Press, 9781773213651, 2020

Format: ARC 

Rating:  (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 2

Genre:  Historical Fiction  

What did you like about the book? This book tells a story from the perspective of a German girl growing up in the aftermath of World War II. With interesting insight, it shows how it was possible to grow up and have no idea what was going on in your own surroundings. Katja, the main character, lived a sheltered life, having no knowledge of the horrific events the people around her suffered through. Once the Soviets came and shook her world, it caused her to reflect on not only her current situation, but also what others might have gone through in the past. The book touches upon a variety of themes, such as bravery, responsibility, and what it means to move forward. I think it teaches a valuable lesson to readers about self-reflection and how one can work towards acceptance despite making mistakes. 

Anything you didn’t like about it? Throughout the book, I found it difficult to form a connection with the characters. Due to the lack of character development, I was not invested in their stories. I grew incredibly frustrated with the characters lack of insight and habit of making the same mistakes repeatedly. I also felt that the story jumped from one plot point to the next without connecting them together.  The twists and turns it provided felt predictable. 

To whom would you recommend this book? I would recommend this book to historical fiction lovers or those interested in the time period surrounding World War II.  

Who should buy this book?  public libraries, middle schools, high schools 

Where would you shelve it?  Fiction

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles?  No

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Marisa Marion, Locke Middle School, Billerica MA

Date of review: 3/14/2020


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