Needless to say it was a raw story, at times cringeworthy, to hear the main character's story and how she grew up in this prison-like system--dealing with the repercussions of allegedly killing this "white" baby. (The color of the skin of the baby is important to the story, which is why I'm mentioning it.)
I really felt connected to the story in that way, watching the way the character was raised, down to the way the character describes the way her mother smells--connecting the smell of her hair and food--and letting that remind her of home. I felt akin to the character. Also having it set in NY--my hometown made it that much more easy for me to enjoy.
Aside from that, there are a lot of detail filled chapters to this story, there's a lot of background to get into--so there are a lot of chapters where nothing particularly exciting happens--but I can see the reason for it.
You really get to know the characters in a personal way--their strengths and weaknesses. Their quirks, the real meat of the characters. Though I tend to not go for novels that are heavy in background, and a lot of "getting to know," time. I did quite enjoy hearing Mary's story--and when she gets pregnant, the story becomes more profound.
It's quite the story, and pretty well done. It was very interesting trying to put all the pieces together, all to find out I was wrong. The ending was superb and I will say I didn't see it coming. The author had me fooled, and I am truly a sucker for a good ending. So, thumbs up for that.
It's not a whodunit mystery, so don't expect a lot of intrigue, but there's definitely some questions to be asked and by the end you'll have you answers. Some of you will be pleased, some may not--but for a debut novel, it's pretty darn good.
Great for people who like their novels real with a lot of detail. A worthwhile read.