Book Review: “In Search” of Us by Ava Dellaira



The author of the beloved Love Letters to the Dead returns with a parallel story of a mother and daughter each at age seventeen.

Marilyn’s tale recounts the summer she fell in love and set out on her own path. Angie’s story is about her search for her unknown father. This sweeping multi-generational love story introduces readers to mother-and-daughter pair Marilyn and Angie.

To seventeen-year-old Angie, who is mixed-race, Marilyn is her hardworking, devoted white single mother. But Marilyn was once young, too. When Marilyn was seventeen, she fell in love with Angie’s father, James, who was African-American. But Angie’s never met him, and Marilyn has always told her he died before she was born.

When Angie discovers evidence of an uncle she’s never met she starts to wonder: What if her dad is still alive, too? So, she sets off on a journey to find him, hitching a ride to LA from her home in New Mexico, with her ex-boyfriend, Sam. Along the way, she uncovers some hard truths about herself, her mother, and what truly happened to her father.

Sourced from Goodreads:



My rating:


Hi, everyone! I’m back with another review, this one being on In Search of Us by Ava Dellaira. I was pretty excited for this book and had high expectations for it. While it might not have reached those high expectations (like 6 stars expectations), I still liked it overall. I just was interested in some areas of the book more than others.

Writing Style

This is my second time reading a intergenerational novel and I’m really glad that In Search of Us was written this way. If it was written with only one POV from a certain time, it wouldn’t have been the same. In fact, I believe the book would have lost something. It was incredible to read where Angie and Marilyn come from.

I also liked the fact that it wasn’t chronological at all, but started off with Angie’s POV and then switched back and forth between Angie and Marilyn. Like you were getting pieces of the story before seeing the whole picture. A picture that made me cry by the end, I might add!


As for the characters, I can say without a doubt that I loved how our two protagonists were portrayed. Since they were given the most voice, I felt as if they had the more [sic] room to grow and develop within the story than other characters.

However, I still felt as if some of the secondary characters were round, too; like James, Justin, James’ and Justin’s grandparents, and even Sylvie. There were a few characters that didn’t appear as much as I would have liked and thus, I didn’t really get a sense of them. More like I got a sense of the roles they were meant to play within the novel.

The funny thing about these characters are that they are tied to Angie’s POV and time (her friends, people she meets, etc). I’m not sure why that is, though. All I can say is, I wasn’t as invested in reading about Angie’s friends and her relationships with them…

Final Thoughts

Well, that’s about all I have to say about In Search of Us by Ava Dellaira. It was pretty good overall; I just wish I didn’t put such high expectations on it! The next novel I go into, I’m going to make sure I have as little expectations as possible. That’s a promise! 😉

Anyways, if anyone is interested, In Search of Us comes out on March 6th, 2018! Oh, and if you have any comments or questions about this book, feel free to ask in the Comments Section below.  Have a nice day, everyone!

–  Sumaya

Sumaya received an advance reader’s copy from Raincoast Books in exchange for an honest review. This article was originally published here, by the reviewer. If you would like to have your book professionally reviewed by our team, you can find all the details here.

About the Reviewer

Sumaya is a recent graduate of Humber’s Creative Book Publishing Program, who loves to read YA novels. Follow her on Bloglovin’.

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Published by AlexisChateauPR

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