Number of pages: 320
Number of times read (including the time before this review): 1
Rating (out of five stars): 2
Maybe I didn’t like this book because I will likely never know what it is like to be an immigrant. Maybe I didn’t like this book because of my dislike of contemporary books. Either way, take this review with a grain of salt. I have no way of knowing if anything in this book is accurate. All I can comment on is what I liked and didn’t like.
Fabiola’s voice is very juvenile. While there is nothing necessarily wrong with being juvenile, and I understand that moving to a new place will induce a child-like wonder, I personally did not enjoy her voice. It also didn’t help when she makes a complete 180 and starts swearing and beating people up later on.
I did however like how the book showcased Fabiola’s religion. It is rare that religion is shown in YA, especially non-Christian religions, so seeing Fabiola’s strong religious beliefs was really nice. My choir sung a Haitian spiritual song last year, and knowing more about the culture, I have even more respect for it.
I did not like the romance. It happened way too early on, and was very strange. There weren’t really any feelings between them. They kissed, didn’t really know anything about each other, and then something I will not mention because of spoilers happens at the end. It almost seemed as if Fabiola wasn’t in a relationship at all.
Speaking of the end, I have never wanted to change the end of a book. That is, until now. I really don’t like how this book ended. It seemed unnecessarily violent and pointless. Fabiola’s reaction to something that happens is also incredibly unconvincing. Additionally, the detective must be well connected if she managed to do something no one else was able to do.
The whole thing with Fabiola’s mother being taken into custody was strange as well. Fabiola would occasionally be concerned for her mother’s well-being, but other than that she doesn’t seem concerned as she should be. Her mother was likely in custody for at least a month, yet she is only sporadically concerned. Also, if they were going to send her back to Haiti, they would have done it by the time the book ended.
Overall, American Street was informative, but not enjoyable, earning it 2 out of 5 stars.