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Ivy (Ivy #1)

3.32  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,407 Ratings  ·  174 Reviews
Ivy is used to being overlooked. The youngest in a family of thieves, scoundrels, and roustabouts, the girl with the flame-colored hair and odd-colored eyes is declared useless by her father from the day she is born. But that's only if you look at her but don't see. For Ivy has a quality that makes people take notice. It's more than beauty -- and it draws people toward her ...more
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published June 17th 2008 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers (first published May 4th 2006)
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May 10, 2009 travelmel rated it really liked it
I've grown tired of the book I've been trying AND TRYING to read: Bitten - and I left the new Mortal Instruments book somewhere so I'm going to try this! The cover summary reminds me of the Gemma Doyle trilogy. Mysterious, supernatural/magic, nineteeth century England.

OH I WAS HAD!! Swindled, Kaboozled.... I am so dumb! So I'm reading and reading and mark my words it's an enjoyable read BUT where was the magic? Where was the supernatural??? Where were my go
I have no idea what was going on with this book. Every time I thought it was going to be one thing, it veered in a completely different direction. It had all the essential ingredients of a Victorian melodrama: an orphaned heroine, a den of thieves, laudanum addiction, pre-Raphaelite painters -- but it was so bizarre, and the writing so clunky, that it left me completely cold. I felt alienated from Ivy, who was very difficult to warm to. I found her vegetarianism unbelievable (as if a starving ch ...more
Stephanie Graham Pina
I started this book wanting to love it because of its subject matter since the Pre-Raphaelites and Lizzie Siddal in particular are dear to my heart. I'm disappointed that I couldn't embrace it as much as I had hoped. I can't understand why the author couldn't use Rossetti's name. Repeatedly he is referred to as "the Italian". After the third or fourth reference, I was exasperated. After reading it so many times (the Italian, the Italian, the Italian) it just became an intrusive element in the st ...more
Dec 31, 2009 CLM rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Anna Kim
Dec 22, 2011 Anna Kim rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
There is a lot of historical, though not very descriptive, passages about Victorian England the pre-Raphaelite art movement, and the author's coyness about revealing the identity of "the Italian" gets tiresome pretty quickly, especially for those who studied English literature and was able to ascertain the name fairly early on.
This is a pretty typical story of a hard luck girl who, through sheer luck (and it was luck since Ivy is pretty dumb, not uneducated, though she is that, too) manages to f
Morgan F
Ivy's life is far from picturesque. Orphaned at a young age, she moves in with her in-laws, a poor family of scoundrels. At the age of five, she runs away and finds herself an addition to a troupe of thieves, in particular, the "skinner" Carroty Kate. In order to silence Ivy's screams in the middle of the night caused by nightmares, Kate starts giving Ivy laudanum, one drop at time.

Eleven years later Ivy is back home with her family, when her bright red hair and pale beauty catches the eye of a
Jan 11, 2011 Kristy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I picked this book out of my pile to read, I admit I judged the cover. I thought it was going to be a cheesy love story or be about some kind of jacked-up version of
Poison Ivy

But, I was way off.

Ivy is a girl living in London, with basically no one to care for her and no way of supporting her own self. One day she happens to meet a skinner, a robber of small children. But, this woman, this Kate takes a liking to the read-headed little Ivy and devises a plan to use her. She takes her in alo
Feb 21, 2011 Nafiza rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
Doesn’t the synopsis sound divine? I thought so too. I checked this book out from the library because the synopsis coupled with the cover won me over. There’s an ethereal sense about the girl on the cover, perhaps the curve of her cheeks that whispers of vulnerability and I’m going to wax poetic until I stop myself.

Okay, I’m done.

Anyway, the book didn’t deliver as I had hoped it would. It was sort of like seeing the potential, knowing it was in there but failing ultimately to find it manifested.
Cover Blurb: Not a fan of it; it leers, and it is really quite misleading about what sort of book it is. I was expecting something sappy, and horribly mushy, and probably even edgy, with more than one bedroom scene. Yeah, my expectations were not high, and now that I've read the book, I really think they ought to have chosen a different approach with the cover.

What I Liked: I love, absolutely love, Mrs. Frosdick! She is wonderfully horrid; I am seriously jealous of the Author for coming up with
Jan 02, 2011 PurplyCookie rated it really liked it
In true Dickensian manner, this atmospheric, richly detailed story takes readers from the slums to the upper-class locales of mid-1800s London. Ivy is a victim throughout much of the book, trying to escape villains who seek her demise. Orphaned and living with uncaring relatives, she runs away at the age of five, after bad experiences during her first day at school. She returned home a few years later, a laudanum addict.

At 15, she’s roused from her typical drugged state in order to earn money a
May 24, 2011 Erin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Looking at the reviews I've written so far, I became concerned that it would appear I hate everything. This is not the case. I've just picked up some duds, and a few middle-of-the-pack werewolf books lately. Ivy, however, was a lovely, captivating, and refreshingly different book, and the first in this project of mine that I've truly enjoyed.

Ivy, a red-haired orphan living in the slums of Victorian London, learns early on to expect nothing but misery and humiliation from life. She moves through
Ivy is merely a poor relation in an already-poor family, and she's made to never forget it. But if she's anything it's irrepressible, even in the slums. She won't eat meat even though she's undernourished, and she doesn't take guff from anyone.

When she is noticed by an artist for her rare, incongruous beauty, she is given opportunity to model for him as Eve in The Fall. She takes it, and so do her housemates, who would pretty much force her to anyway- anything for a little extra cash.

This peasan
May 18, 2010 Erin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: yafiction
Ivy grew up in England in the mid-1800s. Orphaned and left with selfish relatives, she is given the opportunity to attend school; after a negative run-in with a woman who tries to force her to eat meat, she runs away. Ivy is taken in by a street gang and begins a different sort of life on the streets...

Fast-forward a number of years. Ivy is living with her relatives once again, when an artist inquires about her becoming his model. Although she may be stunning on the outside, there are many thing
Natalie  Harvey
Jan 04, 2009 Natalie Harvey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of A Great and Terrible Beauty, The Bell Jar, and Victorian writing
Recommended to Natalie by: saw it sitting on the shelf at Pages for All Ages
Once I figured out that this was not your average YA novel, I was better able to appreciate the story. Something of a Victorian-inspired with Oliver Twist and The Bell Jar elements, Ivy is a complex tale of its title character. From a poorer than poor family, to a school for wayward children, to a life on the streets with thieves and criminals, Ivy's first few years of life more than difficult and unfortunately formative. She spends the next ten years in a drunken stupor, and then is recognized ...more
Nov 11, 2012 April rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sometimes a girl just needs a really good work of historical fiction to ease her hectic life. Ivy by Julie Hearn was exactly what the doctor prescribed. First, there is the gorgeous cover, which actually kind of threw me. I went into the book expecting some sort of romance, just because there was a woman on the cover. Silly me. What I got in return was something much better.
Read the rest of my review here
Anne Osterlund

In Which a Young Girl Grows Up With a Dark Past, Is Hired to Work as a Model for a Not-So-Famous Painter, and Learns That the Most Dangerous Thing in the World can be a Jealous Mother.

OK, so my favorite parts of this book were all the chapter subheadings (see above), but I also loved Ivy. And her affinity for animals. This poor girl is forced to pose in a tablecloth with a boa constrictor around her feet! And there are people who are jealous!
Mar 12, 2014 Lily rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was okay.

I didn't hate it, but I didn't love it.

Actually, I take that back.

I really liked most of the book- but the the other book, 'Hazel' ruined it all for me.

I enjoyed reading about Ivy, and her strong character, her beauty, her love of animals, her fight against her addiction and the people trying to do her in, and I expected her to stay that way. (The next part is kind of a spoiler and kind of not, so yeah) I did not expect her to marry some man she doesn't love for his money a
May 07, 2012 X rated it it was ok
Nothing wonderful, but entertaining enough and a quick read. The story was interesting, but I thought it could have been done better. There were things that seemed a bit out of place at the end, and there were a good many things I would have liked wrapped up better, though they were not so important to the plot. Still, there were a few sweet moments and overall it was an enjoyable diversion.
This was a strange book, first why would a staving, orphan girl become a vegetation? It doesn't make sense. Also a lot of the characters felt fake and had no redeeming factors. The story just didn't work for me even if I enjoyed how it ended. So not my type of book but may work for others.
May Elise
A well written book stylistically, but I'm not really sure what the purpose of it was. It was almost as if the writer couldn't figure out for sure where she wanted to go with the main character, so she kept switching it up. Also, I'd like to note that for some odd reason the cover of my book said "Who said seduction was sweet?" when there was absolutely no love story in the book, much less a seduction (thankfully). When the book ended, it was just kind of an "Oh, ok" moment. I wasn't invested en ...more
Elizabeth Pratt
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 30, 2009 Celestasaurus rated it liked it
Shelves: young-adult
Ivy has so many points against her; it's unbelievable how extraordinary she truly is. One, she comes from a poor family. Two, she's been known to thieve. Three, she has flaming bright red hair that's always in a mess of tangles. Four, she's so pale and fragile-looking that people mistake her for weak and spineless. And, more important than anything, she's utterly dependent upon her laudanum.

Despite her addiction and her unusual looks, Ivy has a strange and intoxicating beauty. It's an inexplicab
Jan 28, 2009 Terry rated it liked it
Recommends it for: those upon whom Dickens has been imposed too soon
Recommended to Terry by:
I am reminded of Ursula K. Le Guin's statement that her great-aunt "said nobody under 18 had any business reading Dickens." I know that I had no particular fondness for Great Expectations, Oliver Twist, etc, until I was much older (A Tale of Two Cities, as I recall, was more to my liking in my youth). Philip Pullman' Sally Lockhart Trilogy (The Ruby in the Smoke, The Shadow in the North, The Tiger in the Well) plus one (The Tin Princess) and Julie Hearn's Ivy seem to me to make accessible for th ...more
Jun 10, 2013 Emilija rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011-reads
Ivy was not my type of read because I really, really don't like reading books that are set in the Victorian era - I don't mind the genre it's just a personal preference. But despite my strong dislike for the Victorian times I did find myself enjoying the book at times. That's probably the only reason why I continued reading.

It is unfortunate to say, but there was no world building or character development. I understand why the author would think that no world building was needed - because it's t
I was so deeply disappointed.

This book was boring, boring, boring, boring, and BOOOOOOORING.
I don't know how anyone could have read every single word of this book because I skipped about half or so of this book due to the utter boredom.

I was expecting more to be honest after I had read the summary.
I guess the whole English Victorian Times style doesn't really fit me but of all books set in the Victorian Times this was by far worst.

The artists was annoying to read about, his mother was a total wi
Jul 17, 2008 Tasha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ivy is an orphan being looked after by her aunt, uncle and counsins in Victorian England. She is sent to school, but lasts less than one day. In running from school, her life is turned upside down when she is snatched by Carroty Kate, a con artist who steals clothes right off of children's backs. Kate sees potential in Ivy, who catches her eye because of her startlingly red hair. Ivy is pushed into the con-artist business and because she has nightmares is heavily dosed with laudanum to keep her ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ivy was a simple story that I thoroughly enjoyed. Yeah the wording was a little funky but I got it. Ivy has no education, emotionally abused, shes had an overall tough life. She let herself get swept up in an addiction so she wouldnt feel. I thought it was a good twist for her to be a vegetarian and into animals and not the all criminally cruel like her family. I'm not really all that knowledgable of the pre-raphaelite era artists but her reference to 'the Italian' in that context so much was a ...more
Matt Spencer
Feb 06, 2012 Matt Spencer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Given the lurid pitch of this book from the friend who loaned it to me, and the profound effect it had on her artistic identity, I think I expected something a lot darker, sexier, bleaker, generally more dramatic. Which isn't to say this dampened my appreciation for what I got. Ivy has a rough go of life, but she's a resilient innocent, and there's a light sure-footedness to the narrative voice that finds warmth, humor and charm in even the most grotesque situations and characters, to where it b ...more
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Tasha for

Ivy's life isn't exactly picturesque. At a very young age, she is orphaned and forced to live with her aunt, uncle, and cousins, who really can't afford to support another child. Once old enough, she is sent to school, but doesn't even last the whole day. While running from school her beautiful red hair makes Carroty Kate, a thief who literally steals the clothes off of people's backs, catch sight of her and snatch her up.

Forced into becoming a con artist,
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