Friday, March 11, 2011

Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly Review

By Jennifer Donnelly
October 12, 2010
Delacorte Books for Young Readers, 496 pages

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.

— description

I closed this book and could only think of one thing: Holy cow, Jennifer Donnelly is smart. Like, REAL smart, yo.

Yup, super articulate—that's me.

But it's true. It's astounding how every last detail seems to be well-researched. This author clearly put a LOT of work into telling this story.

It's a mix between a contemporary and historical fiction, so there's angsty, modern sensibilities mixed in with the shockingly authentic historical bits. Jennifer Donnelly, are you sure you are not a time traveler? For reals?

Impressive, to say the least. That being said, I think the book suffered a bit when it came to pacing. The historical fiction portions didn't come into play for quite some time, and I think it was a little too long.

Historical fans and Francophiles will love this one.

You might also like: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins, even though they have nothing but France in common. Vive la France? Oui. Ooh-la-la? Cafe au lait.*

Anna Reads young adult book blog

*Forgive me, but that is the extent of my French.


  1. Thank you for another witty, funny review. I really love your blog :)

    A well-researched historical fiction, you say? I LOVE those! Nothing worse than when even *I* don't believe in the characterisations (like a feminist-friendly man in the 19th century. Um, okay, possible, but extremely rare. Please, author, explain why he's that way and don't pretend it's normal. Thanks)

    This definitely bumps it up my to-read list! So many books to eat, so little time... (I eat books. True story)

  2. thanks for sharing your thoughts. I've heard great things about revolution. Mrs. Donnelly, a time traveler? You crack me up :)haha!

  3. I have an interview with Ms. Donnelly on my blog this week. She is REAL smart! I agree!

  4. I've never read anything by this author and all I've heard was incredible stuff. (OH LOOK! I'm super articulate, too :) I say this about every single book that's reviewed, but I NEED TO GET THIS. So many people cannot be wrong!

  5. I'm a little bummed the histfic doesn't happen until later, but *surprise* I own this one so will be reading it at some point in my life.

    And thank you for saying real smart yo.

  6. I read her previous book and thought the same thing. She obviosly puts a lot of thought and research into her work and it's commendable. Will get around to researching this sometime meh thinks :)

  7. I gave Revolution to my mom for Christmas and she Loved it! Now I just need to borrow it back... You've put Revolution back at the top of my radar!

  8. I've heard such great things about this book, I can't wait to read it. It sounds so good!

  9. Yup, read the other one too! And I agree...too slow sometimes. But made for a great read in Florida!

  10. Just a reminder that the Chick Loves Lit Blogoversary Carnival that you signed up for is Tuesday (March 15)! Please try to have your post up at midnight EST on March 15. I will have a linky on my blog that day where you can link your specific giveaway post URL for all the visitors!

    When you post please include the Carnival graphic (from my blog) and a link back so everyone can find the rest of the giveaways. If you have any other questions please let me know - and thank you for celebrating with me!

  11. I adored this book--and I just picked up another book by Donnelly today. Revolution was my absolute favorite read of's beautifully written and one what stays with you for a while. Great review!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...