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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Review: All These Things I’ve Done by Gabrielle Zevin

In 2083, chocolate and coffee are illegal, paper is hard to find, water is carefully rationed, and New York City is rife with crime and poverty. And yet, for Anya Balanchine, the sixteen-year-old daughter of the city's most notorious (and dead) crime boss, life is fairly routine. It consists of going to school, taking care of her siblings and her dying grandmother, trying to avoid falling in love with the new assistant D.A.'s son, and avoiding her loser ex-boyfriend. That is until her ex is accidently poisoned by the chocolate her family manufactures and the police think she's to blame. Suddenly, Anya finds herself thrust unwillingly into the spotlight--at school, in the news, and most importantly, within her mafia family.

Compact Disc, 8 discs
Published September 27th 2011 by Macmillan Audio (first published September 6th 2011)
ISBN: 1427213585 (ISBN13: 9781427213587)
series: Birthright #1

In a sea of dismal dystopians, All These Things I’ve Done shines as a beacon that there is hope in all the despair.  I first heard about this when I saw the trailer on someone’s blog:

And I had to read it.  And then I entered to win the audiobook, and WON!

Though Zevin doesn’t use the term “dystopian” to describe her book, we have the setting of a mismanaged world, natural resources quickly being depleted, nothing new being manufactured.  Alcohol is legal, chocolate and coffee are not.  What?  I couldn’t quite figure the logic behind that one. But, hey, I went with it, and it provided an interesting backdrop for a non-dystopian dystopian.

I didn’t always like Anya, but I could understand her.  Could relate to her and why she did things the way she did.  It would not be easy to be her.  And you felt it was hard.  She is 16 and managing her family.  I felt sorry for her having to grow up so quick.  She whined a little too much, though.

The description of this book doesn’t do it justice.  It is much more beautiful and tragic.  I’m still trying to figure out why whomever wrote it only focused on the first like, forth of the book.  So much happens, and nothing happens.  Life happens.  Anya is forced to grow up even more than she already has.  She has to make hard choices, adult choices, and live with the consequences, for better or worse.  This is hard to write without spoiling it!

This doesn’t quite fit in one genre.  There’s romance, some mystery, a little suspense, and of course a whole lot of YA drama.  My least favorite part of any book is usually the drama.  But I liked it in All These Things I’ve Done. It was necessary to tell the story.

The ending, holy crap, the ending.  It left me whirling like on a chocolate high!

And there’s more books to come in the series!  Yay!

This was a fantastic story with characters that are as deep as the ocean.  If you’ve ever thought about reading this, do it!  You won’t be disappointed!


4 Trees: Make sure this on the list of things you did!

Get to reading,

1 comment:

  1. i got the call today that this finally in for me at the library where i had it on hold. i'm so excited!!!

    a book where you say "...holy crap, the ending..." is bound to be good, right?


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