Let me start by first saying that Hawthorne Books & Literary Arts (www.hawthornebooks.com) is one of my favorite independent publisher’s of literary fiction. So it was with great joy that I accepted this book when asked by the publisher if I would be interested in reviewing this title.
In Loretta Stinson’s debut novel, the reader is introduced to a 16-year-old runaway named Janie Marek. Janie is hitchhiking her way north through Oregon where she lands a job as a nude dancer, at a dive bar, trying to make some money to get by. Janie is underage, naive, yet forced to be older than her 16 years due to her circumstances.
While working at the bar, Janie meets and eventually falls for Paul Jesse – 10 years her senior, and the local drug dealer. Their relationship quickly becomes one centered around drugs, booze, and violence. Stinson does a great job making the reader ‘feel’ the situation that Janie now finds herself in. Control, abuse, anger, frustration, and pain are the only constants in her life with Paul – until one particularly violent episode sets in motion the journey to Janie’s rebirth as a healthy and strong woman.
A striking characteristic of Stinson’s writing is how she is able to make the reader become in tune with Janie’s thoughts and feelings. The reader easily experiences the life of Janie. The writing is engaging and from the start pulls the reader in and doesn’t let go.
I’ll admit I actually had a reading first with this book. Stinson created a character that I became so emotionally involved with that, when one particularly tense scene towards the end was unfolding, I didn’t want to continue reading for fear that something terrible was about to happen to Janie.
Little Green is a powerful story that is as much painful as it is promising. A highly recommended read, Little Green is filled with emotion making it a story that the reader will not soon forget.
For more information on Little Green, or Loretta Stinson, please visit her website at: www.lorettastinson.com.