Louis & Louise by Julie Cohen
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This is a wonderful, thought-provoking story. I picked it up because it was written by Julie, mainly. I've enjoyed every single one of her books so far.
A baby is born in 1978. In one version of the story, it's a girl (Louise) and in the other, it's a boy (Louis). Both are often called Lou.
Lou is the grandchild of the owners of the paper mill around which the whole town is built. They have two best friends - the twins, Benny and Allie. As adults, they both get summoned home to be there for their mother as she navigates the final stages of cancer.
The main events in the timeline are the same, but their impact differs depending on whether it's Louis or Louise. Both the stories are compelling and you want to keep reading to find out what happened. The differences in the stories make you consider the roles that society imposes onto children because of their gender and also what danger means when you're a boy vs when you're a girl.
This was a deeply affecting book. I enjoyed in massively.
I received an ARC through Netgalley (thank you). The usual disclaimer - I know the author in real life as we're both members of the same professional organisation. I was a fan of her books before I ever met her.
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