Sunday, November 20, 2022

The Last Hope in Hopetown

The Last Hope in Hopetown is a charming and well written adventure for middle grade readers by Maria Tureaud. Released 4th Oct 2022 by Hachette on their Little, Brown & co. imprint, it's 304 pages and is available in hardcover, audio, and ebook formats. It's worth noting that the ebook format has a handy interactive table of contents as well as interactive links and references throughout. I've really become enamored of ebooks with interactive formats lately. 

The protagonist, 12 year old Sophie, is a human with two vampire moms, but the inhabitants of Hopetown live in harmony. Everything is fine until some vampires start mysteriously going rogue and becoming dangerous to those around them. When Sophie's own mom goes rogue, she is determined to get to the bottom of the mystery and save her family. There are big themes here: found family, the meaning of love, our interconnectedness, friendship and honesty, bravery, and the struggles minority groups live with to be perfect in every way, all the time, or face the prejudice that's simmering just under the surface. The author does a great job exploring these subjects with sensitivity and (importantly) in an age appropriate manner.

The unabridged audiobook has a run time of 6 hours and 1 minute and is expertly narrated by Mary Cross. She has a warm and richly timbred voice and does a great job delineating the characters. I never found myself lost or wondering who was speaking during the well paced dialogue. Sound and production quality were high throughout the read. 

Four and a half stars. Highly recommended for public library acquisition, for school library acquisition in more liberal areas (sadly), and for home use. My 12 year old self would've devoured this book. 

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes

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