Book Review and Giveaway: Iphigenia Murphy by, Sara Hosey

I am very excited to be a part of the official blog tour for Iphigenia Murphy by, Sara Hosey. Thank you to The Fantastic Flying Book Club, NetGalley, Sara Hosey and Blackstone Publishing.

Publisher: Blackstone Publishing
Release Date: March 10th 2020
Genre: Young Adult

Running away from home hasn’t solved Iphigenia Murphy’s problems. In fact, it’s only a matter of time before they’ll catch up with her. Iffy is desperate to find her long-lost mother, and, so far, in spite of the need to forage for food and shelter and fend off an unending number of creeps, living in Queens’ Forest Park has felt safer than living at home. But as the summer days get shorter, it all threatens to fall apart.

A novel that explores the sustaining love of friendship, the kindness of strangers, and the indelible bond of family, Iphigenia Murphy captures the gritty side of 1992 Queens, the most diverse borough in New York City. Just like Iffy, the friends she makes in the park–Angel, a stray dog with the most ridiculous tail; Corinne, a young trans woman who is escaping her own abusive situation; and Anthony, a former foster kid from upstate whose parents are addicts–each seek a place where they feel at home. Whether fate or coincidence has brought them together, within this community of misfits Iffy can finally be herself, but she still has to face the effects of abandonment and abuse–and the possibility that she may be pregnant. During what turns out to be a remarkable journey to find her mother, will Iffy ultimately discover herself?

I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed here are my own.

The first thing you need to know before you read Iphigenia Murphy is that it is filled with trigger warnings. Many of the topics covered in this book are very dark and if that makes you uncomfortable, this may not be the book for you. However, if you can brave the darkness, you will find that this book balances itself with a ton of light and love.

Iphigenia Murphy (Iffy), the book’s title character, is a teenager in the summer of 1992. I was initially drawn to this book because I too was a teenager that summer, getting ready for my senior year of high school. All of a sudden, there seem to be a lot of books talking about that decade, for which I am very thankful. I am also thankful that Iffy and I had very different experiences in the summer of 1992. While we may have had the same taste in music, that is about all that we had in common.

The plot itself is more about the characters, especially Iffy, and their growth during a three-month period. There is not a gripping plot line that keeps you on the edge of your seat. Instead, it is the careful development of the characters that will keep you coming back for more.

I very quickly became emotionally involved with Iffy and found the book hard to put down. I connected with her from page one and needed to find out how her summer was going to progress. Now that I have finished the book, I find myself thinking about it and the characters and wondering how they are doing. Even though I know they are a piece of fiction, I really came to care about them.

I give this book 4 Sips. Go out and get yourself a copy. You won’t be sorry!

Here are a few of my favorite quotes from Iphigenia Murphy. There were so many to choose from!
“They knew Corinne. Maybe they didn’t know everything. But they knew. Andy they didn’t protect me.” I heard Corinne sign. “Yeah. I think it’s like that a lot, Iffy. I think that’s how it is a lot.”

This quote is a reflection of the sadness that fills this book. As a mother, this quote was especially heart-breaking. The instinct to protect my children, and also Iffy, kicked in when and read this passage.

“I was the kid who just knows there is something in that closet, but who can’t bring herself to fling open the door and confront it and instead just postpones the inevitable. Because you have to fall asleep eventually.”

Fight or flight? Which one are you? Iffy prefers to avoid her troubles, or so she says…

“My desire to tell him everything about me, overcame my self-consciousness. His interest in me was like the warm sun shining.”

This description of young or first love made me smile. I remember those days, back in the 90’s, when boys made me feel this way for the first time too. I can still almost feel that warmth!

“You know why the trees lose their leaves in the winter? ‘Cause they have to save their energy. They got to let those leaves die, they let that part of themselves die, so that they can survive. So that they will be strong again in the spring.”

Of all the quotes I pulled from Iphigenia Murphy to possibly share, this one is my absolute favorite. It speaks to me on so many levels: self-care, self-love, preservation. It’s an important reminder that sometimes, in order to grow and thrive, we need to start over – and that’s OK.

Prize: Win a hardcover of IPHIGENIA MURPHY by Sara Hosey, a bookmark, a button and a skateboard keychain (US Only)

Starts: 4th March 2020
Ends: 18th March 2020

Two ways to enter:

Head over to my Instagram page and look for the Iphigenia Murphy giveaway post.

You can also enter through Rafflecopter using the link below.

Can’t get enough of Iphigenia? Check out the rest of the stops on the blog tour to learn more about this fantastic book!

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