Out of the Easy

My copy of Out of the Easy

Don’t you jive on me reader, because today we are going to get out of the easy!

Out of the Easy is by Ruta Sepetys and it was published in 2013.

Out of the Easy centers around a seventeen-year-old girl named Josie Moraine, who is trying to escape the seedy underbelly of New Orleans society.

Josie’s mother is a prostitute who works at one of the most famous brothels in New Orleans for a woman named Willie Woodley. Because of this, Josie has grown up around some of the shadiest characters in the city.

The story starts on New Years Eve of 1950, and Josie has plans to try and get out of New Orleans. That night, a man by the name of Forrest L. Hearne Jr, stops by the bookstore Josie works at and encourages her to look into colleges. Josie’s determination is only further fueled when Forrest Hearne mysteriously turns up dead, and when another visitor comes into the shop telling Josie she can apply to Smith College in Massachusetts.

But life seems to have other plans for Josie. Plans that seem to want to keep her stuck within the walls of her life dealing with prostitutes and gangsters. It is not until Josie realizes that she wants to escape from her life that she sees that she needs to fight hard to get out of the easy.

Out of the Easy is a much lighter novel that Sepetys first  novel, Between Shades of Gray. Though the Out of the Easy deals with the subject of prostitution and gangs, the book is lighter than her first novel, because of the humor, and the sense of family that Sepetys creates among her characters.

Another thing that makes this novel so enjoyable is the characters. There’s Josie, the well read daughter of a prostitute, who just wants to get out of town. Willie, the rough-and-tough Madam who runs a brothel. Jesse, a typical 50s guy who likes to repair motorcycles. Patrick, Josie’s best friend that runs a book shop, and Cokie, Willie’s encouraging and caring cab driver. With each of these characters, Sepetys creates a unique family that tests the boundaries of what a traditional family is.

With Out of the Easy, Ruta Sepetys creates a compelling novel about one girl’s journey to break away from the rough and dangerous life she has lived to reach her dreams. By the end of the novel, readers will be encouraging Josie as she searches for a way Out of the Easy.

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