Review Detail

Young Adult Fiction 2001
Andi and Alex-Joined by a Diary
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
0.0
Writing Style 
 
0.0
Andi lives in Brooklyn. Her younger brother, Truman, was killed in an auto accident and Andi blames herself. Her parents are divorced. Her father, Lewis, a famous DNA researcher, lives in Boston with his new young wife. Andi lives with her mother, Marianne, who has withdrawn into her art, painting picture after picture of Truman. Andi, alone with her guilt, has dropped from being an A student, to being on the brink of expulsion. The only thing keeping her somewhat sane is playing her music.

It is almost Christmas break when Andis father finds out Andi might be expelled. He arrives in Brooklyn to confront her. Seeing Mariannes condition, he hospitalizes her. Andi, unable to stay by herself for the holiday, has no choice but to accompany Lewis on a trip to Paris where he is going to do a DNA test on a heart, to see whether it belongs to Louis-Charles, the son of Marie Antoinette.

Lewis and Andi stay with G and Lily while in Paris. G is a noted historian and collector of historical memorabilia. He basically lives in a warehouse that he wants to convert to a museum. Knowing of Andis love of music and her talent, he shows her an old guitar and allows her to play it. While alone she fumbles with the guitar case, discovers a secret compartment and a diary written by Alexandrine Paradis in 1795, in the midst of the French Revolution. Andi begins reading the diary and cant stop. Shes entranced, almost transported back in time, living life as Alex would have lived it. I will tell you no more of this story, for to do so would spoil it for you.

Jennifer Donnelly, author of the award winning A Northern Light, has done it again&written an absorbing, almost addicting book. Her characters are wonderful, Andi and Alex as well as the secondary characters. The action both current day and through Alexs diary, is realistic and in the case of Alex, riveting. Donnellys switching between time periods is seamless. Of course, theres a touch of romance thrown into the mix.

It is obvious the amount of research that Donnelly put into the subject before writing Revolution. But the research alone would not make the book as wonderful as it is. Its the writing and plot that make this book shine. Regardless of whether youre an historical fiction buff or not, if you like a well written book with great characters and a wonderful storyline, then Revolution is a must read.
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