Review: Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly



Jennifer Donnelly

Delacorte Books for Young Readers  October 2010

472 Pages



From the privileged streets of modern Brooklyn to the heart of the French Revolution, Jennifer Donnelly, author of the award-winning novel A Northern Light, artfully weaves two girls’ stories into one unforgettable account of life, loss, and enduring love. Revolution spans centuries and vividly depicts the eternal struggles of the human heart.

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.

My Thoughts:

Now to be completely honest I went into this book thinking that I would most definitely not like this. Because first of all I’m not really a history person and it sounded pretty boring honestly! But what a surprise this book was from beginning to end; and I loved every minute of it. I thought it was so interesting that we got to read from Alex’s diary. I found myself thinking about as if it was a totally different book altogether. I thought Alex was at first just a girl trying to survive in the horrible state that Paris was at during the time of the revolution. Then I found myself thinking that she was a little mean for using Louis Charles as a way to be in the queen’s favor but when she started to love him and wanted to protect him I found myself completely sad for her when he was taken away. What overall made me love her the most was when she refused to leave Paris, refused to leave Louis Charles. I got so wrapped up In the writing of this book that It actually brought tears to my eyes, and believe me that’s something that’s very hard to do! I loved Andi, I loved her! I felt so much empathy for her and her situation I felt myself feeling sad for her, and I felt how much she blamed herself for what happened to Truman and how much she wanted to fix her mom. I felt so much for her that it hurt to see her get so depressed. I felt for so much that it was overwhelming, I found myself thinking of her as a real person and wanting nothing more than to talk to her, and let her know she wasn’t alone even though she thought otherwise. I loved Virgil, and I hoped he would be the reason to save her, he was but he wasn’t the only one.  I loved that more than anything else, that in the end what really saved her was Alex & Amade. I thought this book was simply amazing, the writing was good, descriptive, and engaging. The characters were realistic and honest, and I loved the alternating perspectives. I loved that music was such a main point, the lyrics throughout this book was phenomenal! I also loved how much I learned about this book, it definitely made me think about Marie Antoinette in totally different fashion. If you want an interesting historical fiction novel, or if you have never picked up a historical fiction book up before THIS BOOK IS FOR YOU!!




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