Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Disenchantments by Nina LaCour Review

The Disenchantments
by Nina LaCour

Colby and Bev have a long-standing pact: graduate, hit the road with Bev's band, and then spend the year wandering around Europe. But moments after the tour kicks off, Bev makes a shocking announcement: she's abandoning their plans - and Colby - to start college in the fall.

But the show must go on and The Disenchantments weave through the Pacific Northwest, playing in small towns and dingy venues, while roadie- Colby struggles to deal with Bev's already-growing distance and the most important question of all: what's next?

Morris Award–finalist Nina LaCour draws together the beauty and influences of music and art to brilliantly capture a group of friends on the brink of the rest of their lives.


Wow, I loved this book. A book about friends, first love, regrets, and how the decisions you make without understanding why, begin to shape who you are. The role of art in our daily lives fuels this story in a quiet way and is used as a tool to understand the complex characters in the book. Tattoos, graffiti, 80s music, drawings, tiny wood sculptures, photography, an intimate and quirky note left in an unexpected place are all woven into this story about growing up.

I laughed out loud at funny and interesting characters and conversations so real and relatable it was like remembering my own friends. It touches on the ache and confusion of an identity crisis when life brings the unexpected, the crushing weight of secrets too long kept, and the losing of self while searching for something you had all along.

I'm not sure I've ever left a young adult book feeling like I knew a character as thoroughly as I knew Colby by the end and the whole thing is so easy to read and unaffected. It was not a predictable teenage love story nor a campy road trip adventure, and when you come to the beautiful ending you see the author had no hidden agenda or message to preach other than expressing the pain and joy of trying to find your place in the world.

Conclusion: An easy read with substance and gorgeous writing that will hit pretty close to home in some places especially for those in their late teens and twenties. It won't bring you down though, as this lovely coming of age story carefully guides you toward an ending full of hope and wonder at all the world has to offer. This is a book to watch in the coming year and an author to keep an eye on.

5 out 5 star review and you get an awesome cover to boot.

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My name is Sarah McInroe and I am an artist living and working in Texas with my husband and dog, Lucy. I love sharing my art and other's art. You can also see my work at or for sale on my Etsy. Thanks for visiting!