Title: In the Neighborhood of True
Author: Susan Kaplan Carlton
Published by: Algonquin Young Readers
Released: April 9, 2019
Source: Review Copy from Publisher
Synopsis: A powerful story of love, identity, and the price of fitting in or speaking out.After her father’s death, Ruth Robb and her family transplant themselves in the summer of 1958 from New York City to Atlanta—the land of debutantes, sweet tea, and the Ku Klux Klan. In her new hometown, Ruth quickly figures out she can be Jewish or she can be popular, but she can’t be both. Eager to fit in with the blond girls in the “pastel posse,” Ruth decides to hide her religion. Before she knows it, she is falling for the handsome and charming Davis and sipping Cokes with him and his friends at the all-white, all-Christian Club.
Does it matter that Ruth’s mother makes her attend services at the local synagogue every week? Not as long as nobody outside her family knows the truth. At temple Ruth meets Max, who is serious and intense about the fight for social justice, and now she is caught between two worlds, two religions, and two boys. But when a violent hate crime brings the different parts of Ruth’s life into sharp conflict, she will have to choose between all she’s come to love about her new life and standing up for what she believes. (Synopsis from Goodreads)
My Thoughts: I really enjoyed this sweet tale of identity and eventual acceptance. Ruth moves from New York City to Atlanta after the death of her father. The South is a very different place from the city, especially in 1958. Ruth has to decide if she wants to be accepted or true to herself. She chooses popularity, which means hiding her Jewish faith and hanging out with a group of young debutantes.
I enjoyed watching Ruth's journey. She really matured and grew as the story went on. She had to decide what place she wanted in this new world she found herself in. It was definitely a struggle for her, but a struggle that I think is still relevant in our society today. I liked that lesson of being true to oneself.
The first half of the book was a little on the slower side, but I definitely think it's a story to stick with. It does a really good job of teaching life lessons.
I liked In the Neighborhood of True. It presented a really interesting story and I liked seeing Ruth's journey. If it sounds like your kind of read, I'd definitely recommend picking it up.
Susan Carlton was born in San Francisco, although (to her great regret) she did not come of age in the hippie era. Her latest novel, Love and Haight, is set in the Haight-Ashbury in 1971, and has been nominated for ALA’s Best Fiction for Young Adults and the Amelia Bloomer Project for feminist fiction for kids and teens. She is also the author of the teen novel Lobsterland and a longtime writer for magazines, including Self, Elle, and Mademoiselle. She currently teaches at Boston University. She lives in Massachusetts with her family and a not-so-standard giant poodle. Find her online at www.susancarlton.com.
Thanks for stopping by my Blog Tour Stop for In the Neighborhood of True by Susan Kaplan Carlton. Thanks so much to Algonquin Young Readers and Susan Kaplan Carlton for letting me be a part of the tour.