Read advance reader review of Minding Ben by Victoria Brown, page 2 of 7

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Minding Ben

A Novel

by Victoria Brown

Minding Ben by Victoria Brown X
Minding Ben by Victoria Brown
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There are currently 46 member reviews
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  • Gail G. (Northbrook, Illinois)
    First Impressions
    This is a sad but well written book about Grace Caton, a 16 year old Trinidad girl who gets talked into coming to America to further her education and better her life. She is disappointed at every turn from the moment she steps off the plane.
    [spoilers removed]
    I do not know if young people would enjoy this book but I’m sure older readers would. The characters are very well developed. The story line is believable and I’m sure one that is easily recognizable.
  • Carm D. (Omaha, NE)
    Minding Ben
    This was an excellent first novel. The fact that it is partially autobiographical is a bonus. One realizes what a brave young lady she was to come to New York as a 16 year old girl from Trinidad, where she knew no one. The experiences of Grace in this novel are probably typical of many immigrants. They arrive here and some people take advantage of them, it is so sad that this happens. I hope there will be another book continuing Grace's journey, I'm looking forward to more of her story.
  • Lisa G. (Riverwoods, IL)
    Minding Ben by Victoria Brown
    Customs, dreams, losses and relationships make this book a very good choice for book groups. At 16 Grace finds her way into a life she would have never imagined when arriving in NY from Trinidad She becomes a nanny to Ben who much to his mother's consternation, loves Grace unconditionally. Themes of friendship, family and pretending to be what one is not are woven throughout the book, making it a very emotional read
  • Marsha S. (Nags Head, NC)
    Minding Ben
    When I read something comparing this book to "The Help", I was skeptical and fully prepared to be disappointed. After only a few pages, the skepticism was put aside and I became immersed in Grace's story. Her tale of the trials she endured as an immigrant in this country are told in a very personal way, making her character come alive. The use of vernacular and dialect makes all the characters and events real and believable. While Grace's inability to remove herself from her situation with the Bruckners was at times frustrating, her poise and equanimity makes her a sympathetic figure and I felt she would triumph in the end. I'm ready for the sequel!
  • Jane D. (Boulder, CO)
    Minding Ben
    I was totally engrossed in this book. It provides an educational and eye-opening look at a world I knew nothing about. As a linguist, I was particularly intrigued by the Caribbean English, although I sometimes wished for a glossary, and a brief explanation of the grammar. Great story! I didn't want it to end.
  • Cynthia A. (Grand Rapids, MI)
    Real Characters
    The characters in this story are what make it so real. The little communities, traditions, expected behaviors and unexpected twists and turns make it such a good read. Just when you think you know a character and you decide to like or dislike the person, the author shows you a different side of him causing you to change your opinion. I wish this book didn't end. I want to know more of Grace's story.
  • Betty S. (Jasper, GA)
    Minding Ben
    "Minding Ben" is the best novel I have read in a long time. I was rooting for sometimes befuddled but always plucky immigrant Grace Caton the whole way. At times, the plot sounded a bit like the soap operas Trinidadian women like to watch on TV, but the story was so interesting that I could overlook that failing.
    "Minding Ben" is highly recommended to any reader who likes a good story. I can't wait to read Ms. Brown's next novel. Or memoir. Or whatever she writes.

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