June Book Group Read: Lea Dives In

Hello everybody! I hope you all are enjoying your summer so far. I realize that summer doesn’t officially start until next week, but tell that to Mother Nature. It’s been very hot here for the past few days and supposed to stay that way for a few more. Much more like July weather instead of June. But rather appropriate since we are talking about a book set in Brazil!

I wasn’t sure if I was going to like this book, but truthfully, I enjoyed it way more than I ever thought I would. First off, Lea is into photography, an area that is very close to my heart! And she was heading to somewhere in South America, and I’ve had a fascination with Mexico, Latin and South America ever since my 6th grade history course where we studied it in depth. So right off the bat, things were heading in the right direction.

First, we’ll start off with the things I didn’t like. I’m still not fond of the fact that we have these kids trekking off to foreign destinations all the time when there is so much within the United States that they could see and do, plus it would be a good way to learn some more history of our country. I was also very annoyed with American Girl initially promoting her as being a girl from Brazil, but when the book came out, we learn she is only 1/8 Brazilian. I’m a larger percentage of Irish than that, yet I don’t go around identifying as such! I’m hoping if American Girl has learned nothing else over this past year, they will quit trying to sweep ethnicity under the rug. I don’t understand why, especially with the GOTY line, they are so afraid of trying to show some diversity. This was a poor excuse of trying to be ethnically aware if you ask me.

The other thing that bugged me was the professions of her parents. Her mom is an architect and her dad is a college professor. Ring any bells???? I immediately thought of Lanie, same scenario exactly! Why they had to recycle this when it really had no bearing on the outcome of the story is beyond me. Can’t anyone come up with anything original anymore?

The good parts–right off the bat I was thrilled that we didn’t have to start off with an antagonistic character in the book. In fact, there wasn’t one period, other than the issues with her brother. And I loved how that was all handled, very realistic. As a youngest sibling, I can relate to how it feels when an older one leaves home and you feel left behind. I also loved how the story tied present time events with the things she read in her grandmother’s journal. I thought it was a great way to bring everything full circle with the compass and the camera. I also loved her description of the ocean as it was spot on. I remember being completely in awe of the turquoise color of the Caribbean last year when we went to Mexico.

My favorite part was her blossoming friendship with Camila and how they ended the book with the two of them with the dress and then later at the festival. I haven’t read the other books yet, so I don’t yet know how much more we see of Camila in this series, but I much preferred their interaction over some of the other Girl Of The Year books.

Overall, I really liked the book, and was pleasantly surprised with how it all turned out. We had conflict, but not so much nastiness and hatred like Isabella. We had an exciting event and Lea discovering all sorts of challenges that she needed to overcome. I won’t give anything away just in case you haven’t read it yet, but I would definitely recommend this book over some of the other GOTY ones I’ve read. This book is slightly longer than other American Girl books which gave more opportunity to expand the story which was a big plus. And to think I wasn’t a huge Lea fan initially!

Did you like Lea Dives In? Can’t wait to hear everyone’s opinions.

Just to clarify–my bad!

I wasn’t paying attention when I posted about Lea being the next book to read.  I just now realized that the book is actually called “Lea Dives In”.  I’m hoping this is the one that everyone read or was planning to read!  It is the one that came with the Lea doll and the cover looks like this:

Is it just me, or is this the only Girl Of The Year book that’s first in the series that doesn’t just feature the character’s name? I apologize to anyone who may have read the wrong book!

Book Group Reminder and a Couple of Other Things!

Just wanted to remind everyone that Thursday the 15th is when the book group post will be going up.  This time we are reading Lea.  I’m anxious to hear the input!

Also–originally I was going to have no book group in just August and September due to back to school, but due to my own crazy life at the moment, I am going to postpone July as well.  I hated to do this, but I am up to my eyeballs in cleaning out my father-in-laws house as well as paperwork.  My plan is we will resume the book group in October with Meet Rebecca.  I’ll remind everyone once it gets a little bit closer.

I’m also going to be cutting back on my posts the next few weeks, hoping to get back to normal at the beginning of August, for the same reason.  I had written a bunch of posts one day when I had some time and basically put the blog on “auto pilot” (thank heavens for the ability to schedule posts!) but I’m starting to run out of posts as well as time!  I hate this as I have so many ideas and things I want to work on and show everyone, but unfortunately the dolls have had to take the backburner for the moment.  You have no idea how much this bugs me as I not only hate neglecting the gang, but I also miss interacting with all of my readers.  Thank heavens for Instagram, I can take a quick photo and post it, which keeps my hand in the game, but it’s not quite as much fun.

I’ll be back!  Just keep your fingers crossed for us for a quick sale.  We definitely don’t want a second house to worry about through the winter months, so we are hoping for the best possible scenario.  Thanks everyone for being so patient!