Cover Image: Mary Jane

Mary Jane

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Member Reviews

A great read. Really enjoyed this book. A great coming of age story with a strong female lead. 
A story about finding yourself and family acceptance. Would definitely recommend.
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I did not expect to love this as much as I did, but I absolutely fell in love with the characters in this non-traditional found family. It was funny and heartwarming and I so felt for Mary Jane in her need for independence but also having to be the adult in a difficult situation.
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This book is great! Would definitely recommend. Thanks so much to NetGalley and the publisher for the ARC.
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Fourteen-year-old Mary Jane has grown up in a very staid household. She takes a job as summer nanny with the Cole family. Her mother approves because Mr. Cole is a doctor and they live in the same upscale Baltimore neighborhood. But it turns out Dr. Cole is a psychiatrist who is going to spend the summer treating a drug-addicted rock star in his home. Over the summer, Mary Jane comes to appreciate what she has learned through her own upbringing as well as to love and appreciate a very different family dynamic.
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Mary Jane by Jessica Anya Blau was a fun story to read. Set in 1975, Mary Jane comes of age over the course of one summer that she spends as a summer nanny for the Cone family. Mary Jane comes from a very conservative middle class family. However, the Cones are a more liberal, looser, family. Dr. Cone is a doctor who treats addicted patients. And during this summer, he has only one patient, a rock star! 

Mary Jane learns who she is, and understands more about the world around her as she becomes a part of the Cone household. 

I really liked this story! Thank you to #netgalley and #customhouse publishing for the advanced e-copy of #maryjane.
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I just couldn't get excited about this book.  I think it was written well and the story flowed easily with a very likeable narrator, even if she was incredibly naive, but at the end of the day, I wondered what it was all about.  I grew up in the seventies and at times, I found myself shocked by the actions of the adults, especially in front of a 5-year-old and a 14-year-old.

I am sorry to say that I just could not connect with most of the characters, their behavior or with the storyline.  I had high hopes based on the reviews but was disappointed in the end.
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I received this book as an ARC from NetGalley. It’s not my normal genre of book so I took my time getting to it. DON’T BE LIKE ME AND SLEEP ON THIS! 
What a wonderful, coming of age book, about growing up, and realizing that everyone’s lives are different from the outside looking in. 
Mary Jane was a wonderful character. A typical teen, confused about most things in life. She is taking care of Izzy, a little girl, for the summer. 
My heart hurt for MJ as she was thrust into a lifestyle she wasn’t familiar with, and knew her parents would be disappointed in. But amidst the chaos of Izzy’s home-she realizes that a little chaos is good, and falls in love with it. Along the way, we meet a rockstar who is an addict, and his wife, who give everyone a run for their money. 
But money can’t buy happiness-and being a strict family can’t buy love. MJ finds both of these out during the summer. A wonderful read that left me laughing and happy.
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I received a copy of this book from #harpercollins and #thebookclubgirls in exchange for my honest review. 

For me, this book is one of the rare new releases that actually lived up to the hype. I loved all the characters, except maybe Beanie 😂.  The story was very good and I thought it was well written. 

I would definitely recommend #MaryJane
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A true coming of age story about a girl's awakening to the world outside what her parents have structured for her and themselves. I thoroughly enjoyed spending Mary Jane's summer break with her.
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This book wasn’t what I expected and was a total delight. It’s the kind of story where you can’t help but root for all of the characters to be ok (even while worrying something truly terrible might happen.) Mary Jane was such a sweet, lovable girl and experiencing her journey and the opening of her eyes to the world outside the limits of her family was so enjoyable. There was such joy and love between the characters. They’re all very specific and somewhat quirky and completely compelling. Even thinking back at them all now makes me smile and think of them fondly and hope that they’re all doing well.
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Mary Jane is a 14 year old girl growing up in a well heeled neighborhood of Baltimore, Maryland. As the summer of 1970 approaches this smart, curious girl  - who lives under the strictest constraints of her mother’s etiquette book - gets a job offer to nanny for a local family. Her mother, suspicious of everyone,  succumbs to the idea as she’s impressed that the father is a doctor. Mary Jane cannot wait to escape the confines of her daily routine and boring lunches at the country club. Immediately smitten with her charge, she finds that 5 year old Izzy Cone is fun, smart and a joy to be around. The Cone household is another story. A complete mess with rotting food in the refrigerator, Dr. Cone turns out to be an eccentric psychiatrist and administers to his patients in the garage/office while Mrs. Cone does anything but play housewife. The cherry on top: Dr. Cone is taking care of a famous musician for the summer and invited both him and his world renowned movie star wife to stay as well. Mary Jane is blown away by this family that talks openly about sex, drugs and rock n’ roll. As a young woman in training she is expertly cooking, cleaning, and caring for the entire family within a week. Mesmerized by these beautiful people and their bohemian lifestyle, Mary Jane slowly comes out of her protective shell to discover a whole new world is within reach. Filled with music, humor and self discovery, get ready to sink your feet into the sand with this delightful book and read until the sun goes down!
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A big Thank You to NetGalley and Custom House Books for the free digital copy in exchange for an honest review. 

Mary Jane is the story of a 14-year-old set in 1975 Baltimore. She is raised by her straight-laced parents and enjoys listening to Broadway show tunes with her mother. 

But the summer of that year, she takes a job as a summer nanny for Izzy, the 4 year old daughter of a free-spirited psychiatrist and his wife. What she doesn't tell her mother, though, is that they are secretly housing Jimmy, a famous rock star who is a recovering heroin addict, and his movie star wife, Sheba. Having them in the house opens up her world to new possibilities, which is reflected in their adventures together, whether it was to the beach, or the record store.

You will be cheering her on and the pages will fly by to the satisfying end!!
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I needed this book! I love everything this book stands for!  Mary Jane is a 14 year old girl in the 1970's who is so sheltered and privileged, she doesn't even realize there's a whole different world, right down the street. In one summer she learns what life is really about. She is a nanny for the summer for 5 year old Izzy.  Izzy's parents are hippies!! I love it! They teach Mary Jane about, well, Mary Jane, music, bikinis, rock n' roll, acceptance, love, freedom, and family.  If you can get your hands on this book this summer, promise me you'll read it! Best book of 2021 so far.
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This was a delightful novel about a 14-year old girl, Mary Jane, coming into her own over the summer of 1975 in Baltimore’s refined neighborhood of Roland Park. Mary Jane is hired to be a nanny for 5-year old Izzy Cone. Mary Jane’s parents are conservative Christians, and their home is picture perfect. They attend Sunday mass together, and are members of the exclusive Elkridge Club. The Cones, in contrast, are free-spirited and their home is chaotic. Mrs. Cone is not a housekeeper nor a cook, and Mary Jane is shocked at the differences between the two homes. Dr. Cone is a psychiatrist and his patient for the summer is a famous rock star, Jimmy, and his movie star wife, Sheba. Dr. Cone needs to help Jimmy overcome his heroin addiction. The couple is reminiscent of Gregg Allman and Cher. 
Over the summer, Mary Jane is introduced to a new world of sex, drugs, and rock and roll. She begins to see racism in her family. At times, laugh out loud funny, as well as touching and heartfelt, Mary Jane is a novel you won’t want to miss, and you won’t forget. Growing up in northern Baltimore, all of the locations and stereotypes are spot on perfectly portrayed!! Loved this book!
I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review, all opinions  are freely given.
#MaryJane #NetGalley #HarperCollins
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Having read books by Blau before, i was expecting a simple story that might hold my attention briefly, but I was blown away by the intricacy and the story line here. Mary Jane is a young girl living in Roland Park, Baltimore in the '70s. She is sheltered and somewhat oppressed by her parents, yet they allow her to take a babysitting job with a relatively unknown neighbor. Over the course of the summer, Mary Jane becomes the only stable person in a household of adults trying to find their way in their lives. She cooks, she cleans, she organizes and most of all, she cares for and loves her small charge, Izzy. 
Either Roland Park has not changed much in the last 50 years, or Blau has spent some time researching this environment, since she has gotten the tone and the environment of this city within a city just right. The characters are also well-developed and Mary Jane's interior voice is exquisite. The highest praise I can give this book is that Blau gets Baltimore like Anne Tyler gets Baltimore and she is just as fun to read. I will look forward to Blau's next book with great anticipation.
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I enjoyed the story of a teenaged girl who babysits a little girl for the summer.  She becomes very attached to the family and when the psychiatric father has a famous rock star and his equally famous wife lives with them, her world opens up.  Some parts of the story I did not like, the profanity and nudity in front of a 5-year-old child and 14-year-old girl made me wince.
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I think this book is the perfect book for summer - it was light reading and totally fun.

Looking through the eyes of a 14 year old was a great concept.  This is the first book I've read of Jessica's and I found it very fast paced but not to the point where I couldn't turn fast enough.  I think we need books like this every once in awhile.
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Mary Jane is not your average coming of age story.  The story is perfectly set in the 70's which makes this story more believable.  And being a teen of the 70's myself I was transported back to that time in my own life.  
Mary Jane is a 14 year girl from a strict household. When she is asked to Nanny for the Cone family she is thrilled.  When she enters their house she is shocked by the mess everywhere but she is in love with little Izzy.  Although she is only supposed to be the nanny she becomes the housekeeper and cook as well.  So she finds it odd when the Cones appear to be fixing up a room.  When a recovering addict rock star and his movie star wife move in things only get more interesting.  Mary Jane is thrust into a completely different lifestyle than her own and begins to discover who she is and who she wants to be.   Such a fun story and I highly recommend this book.
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I loved this so much! Mary Jane is a 14 year old girl living in Baltimore in 1975 with her very strict and proper parents.  She gets a summer job nannying for a neighborhood family. Dr. & Mrs. Cone live a very different life than Mary Jane is used to.  Dr. Cone is a psychiatrist who is treating a rock star addict named Jimmy.  Jimmy and his wife Sheba move in for the summer. I loved all the characters in the book especially little Izzy. I grew attached to them all. Mary Jane learns so much about life and people in a few short months. This was a wonderful coming of age story with vibrant, flawed, and very real characters. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone and I’m purchasing a copy of my own for my collection.  
Thanks to NetGalley and William Morrow and Custom House for the e-arc.
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Mary Jane is a historical novel set in 1970's Baltimore.  Mary Jane is a 14 year old girl from a conservative family.  She has the opportunity to nanny for a free-thinking psychiatrist's family. While working with the family, Mary Jane meets a famous rock star.

I wanted to read this novel because of the time period (I am just a little younger than the protagonist). The author does a great job at capturing the 1970's from a young girl's perspective. Those vividly captured retro details were my favorite thing about the book.

Mary Jane is a likable and sympathetic protagonist.  She changes over the course of the summer, and from her time seeing a family so different from her own.

I recommend Mary Jane for fans of historical fiction, and especially for anyone interested in the 1970's.
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