Friday, March 12, 2010

North of Beautiful by Justina Chen Headley

Genre: young adult
FTC Disclosure: borrowed from library
Published: 2009
Pages: 373
Content: PG-13 for language and thematic elements
Reading Challenges: 2010 Young Adult Reading Challenge

This was an amazing book on overcoming life's adversities! It was a touching and thought-provoking story.

Terra Rose Cooper was born with a port-wine stain birthmark along her entire cheek and spends her days trying to cover it up with heavy make-up and long hair...she also spends her time avoiding her verbally and emotionally abusive father. She thinks she's so lucky, though, to have found her boyfriend Erik, that he somehow thinks she's worth his time...though, he doesn't have a clue who she really is or what she really needs.

Taking a trip to Seattle with her mother they literally run into Jacob and his mother. And Terra and her mother's lives change forever.

Jacob was born with a cleft lip and has a scar to show for it...they soon find strength in each other's struggles. Jacob's mother also helps Terra's mother find her voice and her own strength as well.

It's a beautiful story, one that can inspire anyone who reads it and especially with the teen books out these days I feel this is a great one for young teens.

It was a little slow at the beginning and it was really hard to read about her jerk of a father and how they weren't dealing with it, but that has nothing to do with the awesome writing and the way Headley eventually wraps you up into the lives of Terra, Jacob and their mothers and how they all learn and grow and find their own beauty within.

Here are some quotes I found amazing:
"[beauty] it seeps into you. It doesn't make you forget yourself; it connects you with everything and fills you with awe that you share the same space with something that glorious...and then have this epiphany that there's more to the world than just you and what you want or even who you are."

"I didn't have the language to this little girl--or to communicate that beauty--the real everlasting beauty--lives not on our faces, but in our attitude and our actions. It lives in what we do for ourselves and for others."

"Let the glossy spreads have their heart-stopping, head-turning kind of beauty. Give me the heart-filling beauty inside. Flawed, we're truly interesting, truly memorable, and yes, truly beautiful."
Rating: 5/5


  1. This one looks SO LOVELY. I want :)

  2. This one has been on my wish list for so long that I forgot why. Thanks for reminding me :) Glad you liked it so much.


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