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AND DEATH Martha Brockenbrough
Pub. Date: April 28, 2015
Publisher: Arthur A. Levine Books (Scholastic)
Antony and Cleopatra. Helen of Troy and Paris. Romeo and Juliet. And now . . . Henry and Flora.
For centuries Love and Death have chosen their players. They have set the rules, rolled the dice, and kept close, ready to influence, angling for supremacy. And Death has always won. Always.
Could there ever be one time, one place, one pair whose love would truly tip the balance?
Meet Flora Saudade, an African-American girl who dreams of becoming the next Amelia Earhart by day and sings in the smoky jazz clubs of Seattle by night. Meet Henry Bishop, born a few blocks and a million worlds away, a white boy with his future assured — a wealthy adoptive family in the midst of the Great Depression, a college scholarship, and all the opportunities in the world seemingly available to him.
The players have been chosen. The dice have been rolled. But when human beings make moves of their own, what happens next is anyone’s guess.
Achingly romantic and brilliantly imagined, The Game of Love and Death is a love story you will never forget.
"She Whispered this into the baby’s ear: Someday, everyone you love will die. Everything you love will crumble to ruin. This is the price of life. This is the price of love. It is the only ending for every true story."
This tale literally blew my mind. I have never ever read a thing like it! The whole book is based on the premise of the LOVE & DEATH, in a very human like guises, making a friendly little wager. Only they deal in human lives. The tale is told in alternating first person perspectives between Love, Death, Flora, and Henry. Each characters lives it's own tale unaware of how they wander further and further into the messy trap that has been laid before them since there very birth. There was so much pain staking detail put into the time lines of each Henry and Flora's life that I can't help but marvel at Martha's talent.
Not only is it a brilliant story about Love and Death but there is another perhaps more important story within regarding racism in the early 1930's. Flora wants nothing more than to fly her own plane but knows all to well what anyone would think of that. A female let alone of of her "color" would never ever be taken seriously, even though she is more talented than the lot of them. Henry knows he is just a friendship away from being a broke orphan so he does what he must to keep his adopted family happy included being wooed by an evil conniving woman. When a few chance encounters ( or maybe not so chance since death and Love seem to have their little fingers in everything) put these two on a collision course the spark that fly are so brilliant. I couldn't get enough of these sweet courtship. Henry and Flora are both the most outstanding characters! It is heart breaking since I wanted things to so badly go right for both of them but that doesn't seem to be part of the game!
If the story line isn't enough to hook you, Martha really goes out of her way with some stunning and poignant prose. I was devouring this book since the writing was sheer BRILLIANCE! There is so much more I wish to say but can't give to much away so I'll leave you with this. If you are a fan of historical fiction/fantasy.THIS IS A MUST READ!! There is so much goodness here that it is a bit overwhelming. My feels are still recovering!
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Martha Brockenbrough (rhymes with broken toe) is the author of two books for adults and five books for young readers.
She's the founder of National Grammar Day (every March 4), and she's written game questions for Cranium and Trivial Pursuit. The former editor of
MSN.com, Martha has interviewed lots of
celebrities, including the Jonas Brothers and Slash (his favorite dinosaur is
the diplodocus). Her work has been published in a variety of places, including
The New York Times. She also wrote an educational humor column for the online
encyclopedia Encarta for nine years.
She lives in Seattle with her family. Her favorite kind of food is Indian, although Thai runs a close second. Besides writing, she likes board games, playing music with the family band, travel to places far and near, drinking lots of coffee, and working out really hard at the gym.
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