The Degenerates by J. Albert Mann for Fantastic Flying Book Club

Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher! Thanks! All opinions are my own.

 

Book: The Degenerates

 

Author: J. Albert Mann

 

Book Series: Standalone

 

Rating: 4/5

 

Diversity: Slight LGBTQA+ relationship (makeout scene) and based on the covers one of the girls is black and the other might be Asian, but it wasn’t well described in the book.

 

Publication Date: March 17, 2020

 

Genre: YA Historical Fiction

 

Recommended Age: 16+ (TW torture, violence, gore, some language, and

 

Pages: March 17, 2020

 

Amazon Link

 

Synopsis: In the tradition of Girl, Interrupted, this fiery historical novel follows four young women in the early 20th century whose lives intersect when they are locked up by a world that took the poor, the disabled, the marginalized—and institutionalized them for life.

 

The Massachusetts School for the Feeble-Minded is not a happy place. The young women who are already there certainly don’t think so. Not Maxine, who is doing everything she can to protect her younger sister Rose in an institution where vicious attendants and bullying older girls treat them as the morons, imbeciles, and idiots the doctors have deemed them to be. Not Alice, either, who was left there when her brother couldn’t bring himself to support a sister with a club foot. And not London, who has just been dragged there from the best foster situation she’s ever had, thanks to one unexpected, life altering moment. Each girl is determined to change her fate, no matter what it takes.

 

Review: I thought this book was well done. The world building was amazing and I like that the author kept to the historical points in the book. I felt the author did well to subtly describe the horror that people faced in the early 20th century. The book didn’t shy away from showing a light on some of the darkest moments of our history in America. The book was also very well even paced.

 

However, I didn’t like how the book was told. The book kinda bounced between events and timelines a bit recklessly and that made it hard to follow. The book also didn’t develop these characters very well and I had a hard time caring for them as a reader. I feel like the book could have been told from one POV and worked much better than with three. I also didn’t like that the girls just accepted their given labels. It fits with the time, but I think it would have been more impactful if they outright rejected it in them.

 

Verdict: A great read, especially for those who like history!

 

BOOK INFORMATION
The Degenerates
by J. Albert Mann
Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Release Date: March 17th 2020
Genre: Young Adult, Historical Fiction
Synopsis:
In the tradition of Girl, Interrupted, this fiery historical novel follows four young women in the early 20th century whose lives intersect when they are locked up by a world that took the poor, the disabled, the marginalized—and institutionalized them for life.
The Massachusetts School for the Feeble-Minded is not a happy place. The young women who are already there certainly don’t think so. Not Maxine, who is doing everything she can to protect her younger sister Rose in an institution where vicious attendants and bullying older girls treat them as the morons, imbeciles, and idiots the doctors have deemed them to be. Not Alice, either, who was left there when her brother couldn’t bring himself to support a sister with a club foot. And not London, who has just been dragged there from the best foster situation she’s ever had, thanks to one unexpected, life altering moment. Each girl is determined to change her fate, no matter what it takes.

BOOK LINKS
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/46404362-the-degenerates
Amazon: https://amzn.to/38Qx6dD
B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-degenerates-j-albert-mann/1132189225#/
iTunes: https://books.apple.com/us/book/the-degenerates/id1470017404
Bookdepository: https://www.bookdepository.com/Degenerates-J-Albert-Mann/9781534419353?ref=grid-view&qid=1580238159491&sr=1-3
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-degenerates-4
Google Books: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/J_Albert_Mann_The_Degenerates?id=r6OeDwAAQBAJ

BOOK AUTHOR

J. Albert Mann is the author of six novels for children, with S&S Atheneum Books for Young Readers set to publish her next work of historical fiction about the Eugenics Movement and the rise of institutionalism in the United States. She is also the author of short stories and poems for children featured in Highlights for Children, where she won the Highlights Fiction Award, as well as the Highlights Editors’ Choice Award. She has an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts in Writing for Children and Young Adults, and is the Director of the WNDB Internship Grant Committee.

Jennifer is represented by Kerry Sparks at Levine Greenberg Rostan Literary Agency.

AUTHOR LINKS
Website: http://jalbertmann.com/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14161864.J_Albert_Mann
Twitter:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jennifer.mann.9?tn=K-R&eid=ARA7Ey2pAqWLJpcEJwvixZXeZGM5VmpmEJj-pJDdXTjB8Ch65E4Im38CGVpiZ4fIMFDW3-5R2mNhwNey&fref=mentions
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/j.albertmann/

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