Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Book Review: Revolution, by Jennifer Donnelly

BROOKLYN: Andi Alpers is on the edge. She’s angry at her father for leaving, angry at her mother for not being able to cope, and heartbroken by the loss of her younger brother, Truman. Rage and grief are destroying her. And she’s about to be expelled from Brooklyn Heights’ most prestigious private school when her father intervenes. Now Andi must accompany him to Paris for winter break.

PARIS: Alexandrine Paradis lived over two centuries ago. She dreamed of making her mark on the Paris stage, but a fateful encounter with a doomed prince of France cast her in a tragic role she didn’t want—and couldn’t escape.

Two girls, two centuries apart. One never knowing the other. But when Andi finds Alexandrine’s diary, she recognizes something in her words and is moved to the point of obsession. There’s comfort and distraction for Andi in the journal’s antique pages—until, on a midnight journey through the catacombs of Paris, Alexandrine’s words transcend paper and time, and the past becomes suddenly, terrifyingly present.
(Summary from GoodReads)

I REALLY enjoyed this book, particularly the way in which it was written. The author makes use of short sentences which, when coupled with the present tense, make the story feel very immediate. The style of writing also seems to perfectly reflect the state that the narrator, Andi, is in.

Emotions come across well in this story. Andi is at times apathetic and at times incredibly heartbroken, and I was drawn into the story enough to feel whatever she was feeling. And the romantic parts just seemed so sweet and innocent compared to the life Andi experienced in Brooklyn -- I wish there were more of those parts!

I found the history of France a little tedious at times, probably because history isn't one of my main interests, but I learned a lot about the Revolution in France that I didn't know before, and I'm grateful for that.

The other part I LOVED about this book was all the music jargon. Andi is very talented and music is the only thing left in her life that she cares about. Having been a music student myself at school and having learned the history and the terminology, I really enjoyed being transported back into that world of music. That world where sometimes the only thing that can make anything right is to sit alone with your instrument and play your heart out.

Some books have a great story and some books are really well written.
This book is both :-)


The Golden Eagle said...

I love history, music, and a well-written book, so Revolution is definitely on my TBR. The short sentences are a little off-putting for me, but things like that usually fade away into the background once I get involved in a story.

Jemi Fraser said...

Sounds like a terrific book - love the premise. I'm a big music nut too so it sounds like it would be right up my alley. Thanks for the tip :)

RaShelle said...

Hey Rachel - Glad you finished the novel. I loved Jennifer's writing. The MC is very hard, yet I cried for her. I thought the author did such a great job of making her not loveable, but I cared for her. I rooted for her. I wanted her to find happiness

erica and christy said...

THIS BOOK SOUNDS AMAZING AND PERFECT FOR ME!!! sorry to shout at you. i'm just very excited! wonderful review. AND you're amazing at designing your blog. love it every time! How do you do that with your blog title??? christy

Shallee said...

I just finished this (literally, like 10 minutes ago), and I LOVED it. It's one I want to read over and over, for all the reasons you mentioned. Thanks for the review!