Author: Sara Taylor
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Page Length: 304 pages
Publisher: Hogarth Press
Publish Date: August 1, 2017
Rating: Bruh (See Rating System/Scale)
I didn t realise my mother was a person until I was thirteen years old and she pulled me out of bed, put me in the back of her car, and we left home and my dad with no explanations. I thought that Ma was all that she was and all that she had ever wanted to be. I was wrong.As we made our way from Virginia to California, returning to the places where she d lived as a child in foster care and as a teenager on the run, repaying debts and keeping promises, I learned who she was in her life-before-me and the secrets she had kept even from herself. But when life on the road began to feel normal I couldn t forget the home we d left behind, couldn t deny that, just like my mother, I too had unfinished business.
This enigmatic pilgrimage takes them back to various stages of Alex s mother s life, each new state prompting stories and secrets. Together they trace back through a life of struggle and adventure to put to rest unfinished business, to heal old wounds and to search out lost friends. This is an extraordinary story of a life; a stunning exploration of identity and an authentic study of the relationship between a mother and her child.
The Lauras is the new novel from the exceptionally gifted author of The Shore, which was long listed for the Baileys Women s Fiction Prize and shortlisted for the Guardian First Book Award and the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year.
– Goodreads Synopsis
*Thanks to Blogging for Books for giving me this ARC in exchange for an unbiased review*
This novel is so realistic, that I didn’t realize how real it was.
The story is told from a third person’s perspective of a future Alex (30 years in the future) on a country stretched 3 year roadtrip geared towards finding out Alex’s mother’s past/secrets.
Simple enough, right? That’s the entire structure of the story. It’s simple, straight-forward, and not too stimulating. Great for readers that like to take it slow and not have a lot of things jumping at them all the time.
Alex, the main character, refuses to be identified by gender. Hence why I haven’t said girl or boy yet. With that, Alex goes through a lot of turmoil. People want to know the identity, they look at Alex with confused and concerned faces for the 3 years we know, but Alex went through this way before. Of course, the school bullies come along too, and y’all know how that goes.
Mom is a free spirit, the type of parent that lets their kid run wild with freedom, which ins’t a bad thing unless it’s a bad thing. Meaning, the kid abuses the privilege of trust. Alex did not. That shows us how much respect showed towards Mom who is on this roadtrip to piece together her own life for Alex’s sake.
Where’s the dad, he’s there, just not with them *Mom left, taking Alex*.
What You Might Not Like
Sara Taylor’s novel, The Lauras will leave you with unanswered questions.
If you plan on reading this, prepare for that. You may get frustrated. Just saying.
I have to point out what I would have to deem a trigger warning: sexual premise, bullying, pedophillia, death – a lot of things are covered and it’s mostly the Mom’s past, which sad would be an understatement. From my understanding, once it gets you into your feels, it helps you bounce back as quickly as it made you sad. To some, that could be good or bad.
Labels that you don’t know will surely frustrate you. It’ll keep you wondering what gender is Alex the entire time. If it doesn’t get in your way of reading, I guarantee you’ll fly through this book.
Another question left unanswered, which you can figure out yourself if you paid that much attention, is who Mom was referring to in all her stories. We know it’s Laura……..Which Laura? Or, is all the Lauras one Laura? Just have to pay attention.
What You May Like
Sara Taylor took a step into the topics a lot of authors don’t write about.
Labeling, identity, sexual preferences – things that are sometimes difficult to explain or get people to wrap their minds around. I for one enjoyed it. The struggle, coming into one’s individuality, relationships – this is all realistic to life.
Not saying I don’t like anything unrealistic, fantasy is my favorite genre. What’s shown in The Lauras is a literal journey. A journey that many of us want to take at least once in our life. For me, it’s driving through every state in the U.S. and I want to live in Japan for a bit, but I digress.
A touch on difficult subjects is like a portal to a part of the world that is ignored in many ways. Along with the maturity Alex shows throughout the book, what’s ignored is spoken with passion.
In my opinion, what is stressed by Sara Taylor and her characters is what drives the story and what will keep you reading. All that I mentioned above, if it doesn’t sound like something you would read, I’d assume you wouldn’t finish.
There were a few other reviews I read that stated just that, so prepare if you still read it.
This is one of those books that can change someone’s perspective on certain topics, especially kids. With that being said, I think this is perfect to be read in school.
Recently, I read Yecheilyah Ysrayl’s Renaissance: A Nora White Story that went into Black history, accurate Black history. Coupled with this, The Lauras would make for a great addition to a cirriculum.
How’s this review format? Have you read The Lauras? Do you think this would be great for school?
all one, maybe two if you want to be on my good side and obtain everything you want in the world! *evil laugh*