Wednesday, 25 September 2019

Audio: The Downstairs girl - Emily Woo Zeller

Narrated by: Emily Woo Zeller
Length: 10 hrs and 22 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 08-13-19
Language: English
Publisher: Tantor Audio
Historical fiction YA
In exchange for an honest review

Narrator: 
I like the narrator as I have listened to her before, but I did have to up to 2.2 since I felt it was narrated too slowly, but that just makes the story go faster so all good in my book.

She was the perfect voice for Jo.

Story:
Jo lives with her guardian in a basement. Atlanta after the war means no rights for Chinese people, they are not even citizens.

She loses her job and starts working for the family she worked for before, including a certain bratty daughter. She also starts writing an agony aunt column that takes the city by storm.

Did I see the city going crazy over it, nah, not really. I liked what she had to say, she wanted equality and liberty. But far fetched sure, but hey this is a story after all and I really liked how she went after everything. Though the author did try to put in too many issues at once, I know the time gives a lot to talk about, but a focus on a fewer would have been better.

There might be a romance blossoming at the end, nah, did not feel that. I will just choose to see her not going after that.

There is also drama regarding who she is. Who were her parents? I am not saying no to a bit of mystery. I really enjoyed that part. Even if grrrr, it made me want to hit people.

I enjoyed the story, and it did actually never feel particularly YA. I did not even realize it was YA to be honest.


By day, 17-year-old Jo Kuan works as a lady's maid for the cruel daughter of one of the wealthiest men in Atlanta. But by night, Jo moonlights as the pseudonymous author of a newspaper advice column for the genteel Southern lady, "Dear Miss Sweetie". When her column becomes wildly popular, she uses the power of the pen to address some of society's ills, but she's not prepared for the backlash that follows when her column challenges fixed ideas about race and gender.

While her opponents clamor to uncover the secret identity of Miss Sweetie, a mysterious letter sets Jo off on a search for her own past and the parents who abandoned her as a baby. But when her efforts put her in the crosshairs of Atlanta's most notorious criminal, Jo must decide whether she, a girl used to living in the shadows, is ready to step into the light.

26 comments:

  1. This sounds interesting, I was surprised when I got to the end and you said it was YA.

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  2. Glad to hear you enjoyed in despite dealing with a few too many issues. Sounds like a slice of history. :)

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    Replies
    1. She really did want to talk about everything

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  3. There aren't many basements in Atlanta but I think I'd like this book for the setting.

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    Replies
    1. It was actually something built to smuggle out slaves through so basement and basement :)

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  4. This one is new to me but it sounds interesting. I wish I could listen to audiobooks as fast as you do. I think my head would explode if I tried to listen at 2.2x.

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    Replies
    1. Hehe, well my head explodes at 1 so I know the feeling

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  5. Not really my thing, but I did just listen to Polaris Rising, which EWZ narrated. I liked her for that book. I only listened at 1.25x

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    Replies
    1. I should check, but I do not think I had to up it this much for her other ones

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  6. 2.2???!!!! I speed mine up sometimes but I don't think I could keep up at that speed lol

    Karen @ For What It's Worth

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  7. Sounds good and sometimes YA is a very enjoyable read.

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    1. Sometimes yes ;) When it is not pnr or fantasy

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  8. OMG yes, Emily Woo Zeller rocks! I've listened to so many books narrated by her this year, I think it's because of all the Asian-inspired fantasy :D

    ~Mogsy @ BiblioSanctum

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  9. This one does sound interesting with her fighting for equal rights and the mystery around her parents. Too many hot points can get distracting, for sure.

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    Replies
    1. She wanted to discuss a lot. Women, race, status, you name it

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  10. I've been noticing that a lot...a lot of YA don't feel like YA

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  11. I want to read this one, too. It sounds like an empowering book from an immigrant who had to make do with what she's got.

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    Replies
    1. And what she has got is nothing :/ Except that sharp mind of hers! :D

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  12. I'm glad you enjoyed this one. I don't read much YA but this sounds good.

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    Replies
    1. It did have this other feel, maybe cos it was a historical

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