“If You Come Softly,” by Jacqueline Woodson

“If You Come Softly,” by Jacqueline Woodson is the story of romance between a Jewish girl and a black boy.

The two main characters are Jeremiah, a teenage boy attending a fancy prep school in Manhattan. Although he is one of the few black boys there he still feels relatively comfortable being who he his. Jeremiah's greatest worries are about his rich parents who have separated and just can't seem to get along. But Jeremiah's life is due to change when he meets Ellie.

Ellie is a Jewish girl who has her own family problems. She lives with her mother, who has twice abandoned her, so she doesn't really trust her. So when Ellie meets Jeremiah she choses to not tell her mother about him, in part just because she is shy, but to a large extent because she is afraid of what her response will be to the news that Jeremiah and her are romantically attached.

I felt that Jacqueline Woodson did a remarkably good job of approaching this rather delicate subject with careful balance, but also vivid clarity. “If You Come Softly,” has very well designed characters that the reader can commiserate with, no matter what race or color they are.

“If You Come Softly” is about how Ellie and Jeremiah must cope with other people's reactions to their relationship. Though it is not the best book I've ever read, it has a rather unique plot that not many other authors have dared to tackle.

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Inkweaver Review 2009-08-21T14:41:00-05:00

18 replies so far. What are your thoughts?

Anonymous said...

I thought this book was incredible. The whole story was so sweet and it showed how two people from two diffrent worlds can come together and fall in love and not give care about what other people think.

Anonymous said...

I thought the book was just horrible.. I mean I understand the message, but it had no climax- nothing. It was just, "Oh, we are different races, and we love each other" then Oh no Jeremiah gets shot.. Nothing. I wouldn't recommend it.

Anonymous said...

i thought this book was really cute and romantic at the same time because they both dont know that they like each other. At the end it iss really sad that jeremiah dies at the end of the book but i think people should really read this book and than they know what it is really about instead of judging a book by its cover.

Anonymous said...

This was a an interesting book. Although I won't rate it among the best I've read, I liked where the author was driving the story line but it wasn't the epitome of interracial love. It showed some possible outcomes though so I very much appreciate that.The most poignant moment ( Its a spoiler)is my least favorite part because I was looking forward to what else the relationship will bring. Although its not my favorite, I'm anxious to read the next book . I think the title is Behind You...... I recommend this book in spite of its flaws

Anonymous said...

i hated the book :( sorry im not tryin to be mean i just didn`t like it at all.

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Nikki Johnsaay said...

Well, I was forced to read this book as a class assignment and found the book to be quite interesting. Some parts, to me, were unclear and did not seem believable regarding the relationship of Jeremiah and Ellie. It was not bad but it was not the best.