Maureen Johnson has a prequel to this book, called Thirteen Little Blue Envelopes. My cousin lent the sequel to me first, so I’ll have to go back and read all about Ginny’s adventures in Europe after I review The Last Little Blue Envelope!
Ginny Blackstone thought that the biggest adventure of her life was behind her. She spent last summer traveling around Europe, following that tasks her aunt Peg laid out in a series of letters before she died. When someone stole Ginny’s backpack – and the last little blue envelope inside – she resigned herself to never knowing how it was supposed to end.
Months later, a mysterious boy contacts Ginny from London, saying he’s found her bag. Finally, Ginny can finish what she started. But instead of ending her journey, the last letter stars a new adventure – one filled with old friends, new loves, and once-in-a-lifetime experiences. Ginny finds she must hold on to her wits … and her heart. This time, there are no instructions.
I saw read the summary and immediately thought, “Okay, I have to read this.” I mean, backpacking all over Europe? Who doesn’t want to travel? This was a way to do it without ever actually leaving my house and spending no money at all. How much better does it get, besides actually going to Europe? And the idea of following letters around the continent, it reminding me of a huge scavenger hunt, with a personal touch.
The book is filled with adventure, heartache, and love. I enjoyed every second of it, especially when I met Oliver for the first time. After a description, I read, “He was, without question, the most English-looking guy Ginny had ever seen. She wasn’t even sure what that meant, really. She only knew that from now on, when calling up an image of an English guy in her mind, this would be the picture.” (pg. 28). It just seemed a bit odd, because most teenage girls in real life think of Robert Pattison or some other Brit actor, and Ginny thinks of a stranger she hasn’t even met yet.
The chapter titles were interesting too. Some of them were a little obvious as to what would happen in the chapter, but others, like “The Bells,” well, you go ahead and try to figure it out. Or just read it and find out! I liked how the book wasn’t in first person, but I knew Ginny better than I knew any of the other characters. It was definitely from her viewpoint, no one else’s, and it was amazing how the author managed that without Ginny narrating. This book was simply amazing, and I fell in love with the adventurous side of Europe. I’m pretty sure if I visited in person, I’d be disappointed because I wasn’t on a scavenger hunt having all these amazing adventures. I wouldn’t be breaking into a cafe, I’d be visiting the Effiel tower. I’d be in a cab, not a creepy white van that kidnaps children. So go ahead and read the book! I guarantee that you’ll be unsatisfied by the Europe you see in real life.
Wishing I was on a scavenger hunt (or just on a vacation),