Monday, January 16, 2012

Review of 13 Little Blue Envelopes by Maureen Johnson

Title: 13 Little Blue Envelopes
Author: Maureen Johnson
Published by: HarperTeen
Pages: 319
Source: Free from Amazon (obtained 4/12/2011)
Format: ebook
Rating: ★★★

Summary from Goodreads:  When Ginny receives thirteen little blue envelopes and instructions to buy a plane ticket to London, she knows something exciting is going to happen. What Ginny doesn't know is that she will have the adventure of her life and it will change her in more ways than one. Life and love are waiting for her across the Atlantic, and the thirteen little blue envelopes are the key to finding them in this funny, romantic, heartbreaking novel.

13 Little Blue Envelopes is the perfect vacation read.  While traveling this last week I though this would be a light, fun and fast read.  While I was right, I also learned this book had more depth than I expected.  The story behind these envelopes itself is heartbreaking and while Ginny has a mission with each envelope her adventures teach her more about herself then seeing the world.  Each envelope challenges her and creates a journey she won't soon forget.

First off, I'm very impressed with how well Ginny followed the rules that came along with the 13 envelopes.  I would have cheated.  There is no way that I would have traveled to Europe with no money, credit cards or electronic contact with anyone in the United States.  Also there is no way I would limit myself to just one backpack.  Who am I kidding the last time I went to Europe I had 4 suitcases just for myself.  Ginny is very trusting of her Aunt who sent the envelopes.  She went along with each mission no matter how crazy or unlikely they seemed.

Some of Ginny's actions surprised me throughout the novel.  I would have been more conscious of others and scared out of my mind to be taking this journey alone.  She somehow convinced her conservative parents to let her take this journey.  I feel this part is a little unbelievable for her age.  Maybe if she was 18 or traveling with a friend, but I don't see most parents letting someone go off on this journey with no idea where they were staying or what they had to do.  I definitely had to suspend reality a bit to get over this part, but once I did the story was fun and touching. 

I'm not sure if I'll read the sequel or not.  I enjoyed how the story ended and I felt that both Ginny and I had closure.  Who knows though...


  1. One backpack and no money? WHAT!! No, I couldn't do Europe like that. I totally would have cheat too! And it is hard to believe her parents let her go off like that, but I guess that's the beauty of fiction. :)

  2. I didn't like how her parents just let her go, either! It just seemed a little unbelievable. As to read the sequel, maybe. It was good and I think I enjoyed it a lot more but I was also happy with this ending. Great review!

  3. Read the sequel! It's worth it!

  4. it was one of the best books i've ever read.

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