September 4, 2014

Six Feet Over It Blog Tour: Review

Welcome to my stop on the SIX FEET OVER IT blog tour! Today I'll be sharing my review of the book with you. Don't forget to visit all the stops on the tour - the schedule is below!

Six Feet Over It

Author: Jennifer Longo
Genre: YA Contemporary
Release Date: August 26, 2014
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers


Home is where the bodies are buried.

Darkly humorous and heart-wrenchingly beautiful, Jennifer Longo’s YA debut about a girl stuck living in a cemetery will change the way you look at life, death, and love.

Leigh sells graves for her family-owned cemetery because her father is too lazy to look farther than the dinner table when searching for employees. Working the literal graveyard shift, she meets two kinds of customers:

Pre-Need: They know what’s up. They bought their graves a long time ago, before they needed them.

At Need: They are in shock, mourning a loved one’s unexpected death. Leigh avoids sponging their agony by focusing on things like guessing the headstone choice (mostly granite).

Sarcastic and smart, Leigh should be able to stand up to her family and quit. But her world’s been turned upside down by the sudden loss of her best friend and the appearance of Dario, the slightly-too-old-for-her grave digger. Surrounded by death, can Leigh move on, if moving on means it’s time to get a life?

Praise for SIX FEET OVER IT:

“Leigh’s an eloquent spokesperson for the pitfalls of being the kid whom worried about in a family in crisis; her raw deal will elicit indignant sympathy, and readers will rejoice at her triumphant reentry into the world.” — The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, starred review

“Readers will find themselves rooting for Leigh as she returns to the world around her.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“Darkly funny […] this unique debut novel is one to look out for.” —Bustle

“A unique book for unique teens.” —Booklist
Six Feet Over It is a witty and fun look at the very real and terrible subject of death. The book follows our heroine, Leigh, who has been uprooted from her life in California - only to be moved to a small town in the middle of nowhere. To make matters even worse - her father, Wade, sells graves and headstones - and Leigh's house is basically inside the cemetery. Forced to work at the business's office after school, Leigh learns inevitable truths about people and death. She tries to keep her spirits up and maintain a witty demeanor, but Leigh can only stay strong for so long until she breaks.

I have to admit that this book was nothing like what I was expecting when I picked it up. I figured it would be a regular contemporary YA novel where the main character had some growth, realizations, and romance. What I got instead was a witty and charming novel that deals with some of the deepest issues in life - grieving, friendship, love, and death. It sounds almost conflicting to describe a book in this way, but somehow the author managed to pull it off. And it's a debut - that was a huge surprise for me when I found out! Leigh is a strong main character for the book. She's smart, sarcastic, and a fantastic example of a normal teenage girl today. I loved her witty inner dialogues and musings, although at times it felt a bit over the top. Maybe because I'm not a teenager and I couldn't fully relate to it all. I did get annoyed with Leigh a few times throughout the book, but that made her realistic to me - because, honestly, we all get irritated with other people now and again. The author did a fantastic job of demonstrating all the dysfunction in Leigh's life - from her family to living and working at a cemetery - and everything in between. There is a bit of romance in the book, which helped to alleviate the heaviness of the topics being discussed. I thought that was a great way to help balance things out for Leigh's character. The writing was phenomenally done with a natural pace and a conversational tone that made it a breeze to read. It did take a little longer than usual for me to connect with Leigh and immerse myself into the story. This is probably due to the issues I mentioned before about her sometimes over the top inner dialogue and attitude. Once I slipped into the story, I found it to be an easy and quirky book that somehow manages to talk about death and all the heavy details that go along with it, and yet still have an overall upbeat and fun attitude. This book won't be for everyone, but I definitely recommend it for fans of contemporary YA fiction and those looking for an original and unique story.

*A big thanks to Random House BYR for sending me a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review!*

Tour Schedule:

Happy Indulgence Books                            8/26      
Confessions of a Readaholic                        8/27      
Christy's Book Addiction                             8/28      
Unofficial Addiction Book Fan Club           8/29      
The Hiding Spot                                           8/29      
YA Reads                                                      9/1        
Candace's Book Blog                                    9/2        
Stories & Sweeties                                       9/3        
Live to Read                                                 9/3        
A Dream Within a Dream                           9/4        
Rather be Reading YA                                9/5        
Pandora’s Books                                          9/8        
Evie Bookish                                                 9/9        
Winter Haven Books                                   9/10      
Wondrous Reads                                          9/10
Bumbles and Fairy-Tales                           9/12      
Bundle of Books                                            9/17      
The Children’s Book Review                      9/19      

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