in the neighborhood of trueAs much as I would like to say that I’m interested in this In the Neighborhood of True by Susan Kaplan Carlton, I can’t. The second religion gets brought up I tend to nope my way out of it very quickly. I find it to be rather problematic in a lot of ways and honestly, it’s just not something I enjoy reading about. Far too many times I just find myself feeling more frustrated than I could even begin to describe when the subject is brought up. Therefore, for personal reasons, I can’t bring myself to read this book. Also, the title bugs the heck out of me. Comparing truth with religion is just a ginormous fallacy to me. And granted, Christianity bugs me a lot more than others, but at the end of the day they’re all fictional to me.

A powerful story of love, identity, and the price of fitting in or speaking out.

After her father’s death, Ruth Robb and her family transplant themselves in the summer of 1958 from New York City to Atlanta—the land of debutantes, sweet tea, and the Ku Klux Klan. In her new hometown, Ruth quickly figures out she can be Jewish or she can be popular, but she can’t be both. Eager to fit in with the blond girls in the “pastel posse,” Ruth decides to hide her religion. Before she knows it, she is falling for the handsome and charming Davis and sipping Cokes with him and his friends at the all-white, all-Christian Club.

Does it matter that Ruth’s mother makes her attend services at the local synagogue every week? Not as long as nobody outside her family knows the truth. At temple Ruth meets Max, who is serious and intense about the fight for social justice, and now she is caught between two worlds, two religions, and two boys. But when a violent hate crime brings the different parts of Ruth’s life into sharp conflict, she will have to choose between all she’s come to love about her new life and standing up for what she believes.

What do you think about In the Neighborhood of True? Is it something you think you might read? Is it a book you’d rather avoid? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.

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5 thoughts on “In the Neighborhood of True [Susan Kaplan Carlton]; 2019 YA Releases

  1. I loved this book. I think maybe the synopsis doesn’t do it justice. It is somewhat of a secret but it’s not something Ruth actively tries to hide. People just make their own assumptions. It’s more about how much she’s willing to hide who she is in the face of bigotry and violence. And to be honest…there’s not that much religion in the book. The title isn’t addressing religion. it’s addressing Ruth’s relationship with the truth. But I understand that I’m Jewish, so I find more I connect with than others might.


    1. That’s entirely fair. Honestly, it’s Christianity that turns me away more than Judaism. My parents are Christian and I’ve had a rather large number of bad interactions with people because of it and the fact that I’m atheist, so I know that plays pretty heavily into my tendencies to want to avoid it.


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