About My Book Reviews

Saturday, August 29, 2020

Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys


Title: Out of the Easy

Author: Ruta Sepetys

Published: 2013

Genre: Historical Fiction

Grade Level: Young Adult


Read by: Lauren Fortgang

Length: 9hrs 51min

Recommend: No

-Too many popping s’
-The dialogue was much slower than the narration

-Inconsistent volume levels


Blurb (from goodreads):

It's 1950, and as the French Quarter of New Orleans simmers with secrets, seventeen-year-old Josie Moraine is silently stirring a pot of her own. Known among locals as the daughter of a brothel prostitute, Josie wants more out of life than the Big Easy has to offer. She devises a plan get out, but a mysterious death in the Quarter leaves Josie tangled in an investigation that will challenge her allegiance to her mother, her conscience, and Willie Woodley, the brusque madam on Conti Street.

Josie is caught between the dream of an elite college and a clandestine underworld. New Orleans lures her in her quest for truth, dangling temptation at every turn, and escalating to the ultimate test.

My Scores:

Writing Style: Top Notch

Ruta Sepetys has now become my all-time favorite historical fiction writer. I simply adore the way she writes! If all historical fiction were written this well it would become a much more popular category.

This is the third novel I have read by Sepetys, and my expectations are exceeded every single time. I can’t wait to read her latest novel The Fountains of Silence!

I will say that this novel is written a little differently than Between Shades of Grey and Salt to the Sea. Every sentence carries so much weight that you can’t zone out and miss even one sentence or you’ll become completely lost. That’s another reason why I don’t recommend the audiobook.


Characters: Memorable

I found the MC to be completely relatable. She is so well crafted that she felt like a real person to me. She is persuasive, intuitive, jaded, and clever. It's interesting how various and complex her relationships are to all the other characters, especially her mother.

Oh, how much I loathed the MC’s mother! She is crass, greedy, shameless, and incapable of human empathy. Between the MC and her mother is a Mommy Dearest situation. 

Willie Woodley, the MC’s employer, is a wonderful character! She has some of the best dialogue in the novel! It's so unique and shocking to have a woman of this time period be so cut-throat. Willie treats the MC like a daughter, which earns her major brownie points from the reader despite her abrasive nature.


Plot: Absolute Page-Tuner

The plot is completely character driven. I was wholly engaged in the complex relationships that strengthened and crumbled as the characters developed.

The pacing felt too fast much of the time. As mentioned before, missing one sentence could cause you to be completely lost.

Otherwise, it's a completely engaging and suspenseful plotline! My emotions were at the behest of the author. I was heartsick, overjoyed, grieved, and (most importantly) satisfied with the conclusion.


Overall: Obsessed

I love Ruta Sepetys’ writing! It’s exquisite work! Don’t get the audiobook. The voice actor pops her s’ and the pacing is too fast to enjoy anyway. The characters are thrilling, and the plot twists are always emotional, even if you saw them coming. If you’re looking for something a little historical and a little different, I would highly recommend this novel!


Goodreads Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

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