REVIEW: Boy Underground by Catherine Ryan Hyde will leave you with a tangle of feelings. It makes you happy, sad, heartbroken and optimistic. It’s a wonderful story. This is one author I don’t hesitate when I see a book by her. I snatched that baby up because I know I want to read it.
Coincidentally, this book releases on December 7 which is the anniversary of the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor. If you’ve read anything about the internment camps in the United States for the Japanese during WWII then you will know a little bit about this book. It is about four friends that are inseparable until the war tears them and their families apart. This book addresses many topics that will make you stop and think. Maybe it will change how you feel about things.
I wasn’t sure, after I learned what this book was about, if I really wanted to read it. I’m glad I did. I’ve had this happen a couple of times lately. I’ve learned that you can’t judge a book by its cover, subject matter or the synopsis. Do judge it by the author and how well they have handled sensitive subjects in the past. I’m so glad I didn’t turn my back on this book. I still know I want to read anything Catherine Ryan Hyde writes!
I received a complimentary copy of this book from #LakeUnionPublishing and #Netgalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
SYNOPSIS: During WWII, a teenage boy finds his voice, the courage of his convictions, and friends for life in an emotional and uplifting novel by the New York Times and #1 Amazon Charts bestselling author.
1941. Steven Katz is the son of prosperous landowners in rural California. Although his parents don’t approve, he’s found true friends in Nick, Suki, and Ollie, sons of field workers. The group is inseparable. But Steven is in turmoil. He’s beginning to acknowledge that his feelings for Nick amount to more than friendship.
When the bombing of Pearl Harbor draws the US into World War II, Suki and his family are forced to leave their home for the internment camp at Manzanar. Ollie enlists in the army and ships out. And Nick must flee. Betrayed by his own father and accused of a crime he didn’t commit, he turns to Steven for help. Hiding Nick in a root cellar on his family’s farm, Steven acts as Nick’s protector and lifeline to the outside world.
As the war escalates, bonds deepen and the fear of being different falls away. But after Nick unexpectedly disappears one day, Steven’s life focus is to find him. On the way, Steven finds a place he belongs and a lesson about love that will last him his lifetime.