“I was scarred, but I was not broken. Beneath my wounds I was still whole. Beneath my insecurities, beneath my pain, beneath my struggle, beneath it all, I was still whole.”
*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.*
Where to start with this book? I will begin by saying this was absolutely not the story I expected behind the cover. I expected your typical NA romance, boy meets girl there are bets or obstacles in the way or conflict ….. you get the gist. Not that I dislike these stories, I love NA because of this but A Different Blue was just as the title suggests; different.
This really was a true coming of age story, the character Blue that we met at the beginning of the book was extremely different to the girl we knew and loved at the end. It was a story of growth, courage and self discovery and quite literally in Blue’s case. My mind is whirling as I write this review, trying to remember all my favourite parts to include as I write.
We meet Blue who has had a pretty crummy life so far, her mother abandoned her at the age of two with a stranger no less. Just a random guy at a truck stop who had extended some kindness to Blue and the very next day Blue appeared in his truck. Blue was raised by Jimmy as the only man she knew as her father until he died and she had to move in with his half sister Cheryl. It wasn’t ideal for either Cheryl or Blue but Blue was left with no other option.
It is during her senior year of high school that Blue meets the young, hot and British history teacher Darcy Wilson or Wilson as he is known. He uses his lessons in history to draw out Blue’s story, he forces her to delve into the past and confront the loss of her mother and the only father figure she had. What starts out as an annoying teacher/student relationship only continues to blossom into one of the most stable and important relationships of Blue’s life after she graduates.
There were so many great elements that made up A Different Blue, I loved the messages behind them and the way they entwined throughout the story. I loved the history lessons of tragedies and great loves that could apply to Blue and Wilson. I loved Blue’s wood carvings, I thought this was unique and I loved the meaning behind each and every piece and also the emotions tied to them and I especially loved the Native American history and the stories of love and loss.
I loved the relationship between Blue and Wilson, admittedly it started off slow and I thought they may have stayed in the friend zone but there was care and compassion there. Their friendship blossomed slowly and Wilson was the perfect gentleman not making any advances knowing Blue wasn’t ready yet. In turn their relationship was built on a solid foundation. Blue had a lot going on, decisions to make and a life of her own to carve out. Whilst Blue was on her journey it in turn helped Wilson put a few of his demons to rest and again I loved the correlation between the two.
“It was harder to see how a boy like that, so inspired by a saint, could be attracted to a sinner like me.”
“I was spent without compromise, sated without sacrifice, completely and totally head-over-heels in love. And it was delicious.”
There was a point in the story around 50% where it could have easily been orchestrated for Wilson to come swooping in and save Blue and they ride off into the sunset, I did think this would be a substantially shorter story if this was the case but also Blue was the type of girl that had to work things through on her own first. And although I desperately wanted Wilson and Blue to get together from day one I knew when they eventually did, their relationship would be so strong as it was based on the greatest friendship and all that they had been through.
A Different Blue was beautifully written, Amy Harmon just had a way with words, I loved her descriptions and some of the phrases she used. I found myself highlighting passages for no other reason than the beauty of the words and the way in which they were written. I also loved the supporting characters Amy created, especially Tiffa, she was the big sister you wish you had.
To say there were a few unexpected events would be an understatement. Just when I thought I had things figured out a curve ball was thrown and I was surprised yet again. Blue really doesn’t have any faith in herself and underestimates herself at every turn so it was great to see her face some of the most difficult situations with bravery and courage that she didn’t even realise she had.
Blue made a life altering decision during her journey and it was at this part I cried until the words blurred and I could no longer see the page. So I eventually gave up, put my reader down and just had a good old blub. The emotion Amy Harmon captured in those scenes were breath taking quite literally. I am even teary eyed whilst writing this. I am a sap There were many times during this particular part of the journey that deeply effected me and the tears continued to fall but I think it was the interaction between Wilson and Blue when he was there for her in her time of need and also when she made a wood carving to represent her thoughts and Wilson aptly named it. I cried the hardest during those scenes.
I’m totally selling this book to you right?? It is in no way a gloomy story, yes it may seem bleak at times and it certainly isn’t a walk in the park for Blue and also Wilson for that matter but it is a beautiful story and I’m glad that it was told. I thought it started out slow in the beginning and it took me a while to get hooked and that’s the only reason it wasn’t a 5 star read for me personally. But boy once I was sucked in I was a goner. The ending seemed a little abrupt, only because it was a beginning of sorts I suppose and me being the greedy reader I am wanted more. Speaking of…. I would have loved an epilogue. It usually isn’t a requirement for me but because it was Blue and Wilson I craved a little peek into their future.
This was a beautifully written story of love, loss and self discovery. My first by Amy Harmon and now I can’t wait to read the rest of her work.
Amy Harmon knew at an early age that writing was something she wanted to do, and she divided her time between writing songs and stories as she grew. Having grown up in the middle of wheat fields without a television, with only her books and her siblings to entertain her, she developed a strong sense of what made a good story.
Amy Harmon has been a motivational speaker, a grade school teacher, a junior high teacher, a home school mom, and member of the Grammy Award winning Saints Unified Voices Choir, directed by Gladys Knight. She released a Christian Blues CD in 2007 called "What I Know" - also available on Amazon and wherever digital music is sold.
She has written five novels, Running Barefoot, Slow Dance in Purgatory, Prom Night in Purgatory, the New York Times Bestseller, A Different Blue and Making Faces.
Website / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads