17 Jul 2015



BACK COVER BLURB: Lou Bertignac has an IQ of 160, a mother who barely speaks and hasn't left the house in years, and a father who is desperately struggling to keep his family together. But then she meets No, a homeless girl a few years older than her. As the two become friends, Lou resolves to help No get her life back on track, unaware of the impact that her new friend's sudden presence will have on all their lives.

- Contains a slight spoiler, scroll over to hi-light the full synopsis.

FIRST SENTENCE: 'Miss Bertignac, I don't see your name on the list of presentations.'

MEMORABLE MOMENT {Page 195}: I don't know what she's thinking as we walk off. She's not part of his world anymore, but she's not part of ours either. She's neither inside or outside, she's between the two in no-man's-land.

SOURCE: Ex-library stock.

MY THOUGHTS: A deeper read than you might expect, wonderfully moving - if you are anything like me you might want to have a box of tissues at the ready - and with characters that grab you by the heart and don't let go. 

Originally published in French as an adult novel I only hope people aren't put off by the young adult tag given to the English publication.

The story of what happens when Lou (a somewhat precocious and yet lonely thirteen year old two years ahead of her peers at school) opts to do a presentation on the plight of homeless girls and comes across No (short for Nolwenn) an older and certainly more street wise individual on the face of it and yet underneath it all just as lonely and certainly more vulnerable.

Deeply thought provoking and yet without any big revelations. I certainly didn't come away have learnt anything new about the human condition (but then again I'm by no means a teenager), to me the magic of No and Me lay in it being a poignantly beautiful story sublimely written. 


Brandi Kosiner said...

Moving and surprisingly deep sounds like it would be right up my alley.

Kelly said...

A bit of a "coming of age" story for the younger character? It sounds like it might be good - a departure from the historical fiction/mystery we often read.

Brian Joseph said...

Great commentary on this one Tracy. I like the way that you touched upon this book's strengths as well as where it fell sort for you.

I do think that there is value in storytelling that does not present conclusions but that instead just shows slices of people and of life.

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Ah... well you know me, I'll read it no matter what genre it is as long as it is good. :D This sounds like a book I would enjoy. Great review!

Gina R said...

That sounds like a wonderful find. Adding to my wish list as I type this...and will be certain to stock up on tissues. :)

Suko said...

Lovely review as usual, Tracy. This sounds like a wonderful book.

Yvonne@fiction-books said...

Hi Tracy,

I actually don't think I have ever read any translated books - I haven't even ventured into the world of the Nordic crime writers!

I have actually checked out this book before, following a recommendation by another fellow blogger, although I didn't recognise your version of the cover art. The number of ratings and reviews have been amazing, as have the many positive comments and although I didn't add it to my 'Want To Read' list back then, it might well be worth considering.

Thanks for your usual honesty in your review, it always helps to know that I am getting a totally personal view on a book :)

Have a good weekend.


Alexia561 said...

While it's not really my type of read, it sounds lovely! Glad to hear that you enjoyed it, tissues by your side and all!

Literary Feline said...

I am glad you mentioned the YA tag--that can be a put off sometimes, as much as I hate to admit it. This sounds like a wonderful story, one worth reading. I will have to look for it.

Charlie (The Worm Hole) said...

I noted this one a while back and then forgot about it. The cover is lovely as is the title, and I like that you made a point of discussing the age range. That's strange it's different over here.

Lindsay said...

It's a long while since I read this one but it has stayed strong in my memory, I kept my copy and I remember buying it for a friend too, so I'm really glad you liked it too.