Joy's Reviews > Jellicoe Road

Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta
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161941
's review
Mar 21, 11

bookshelves: 21c, australian, teen, favorites
Read on March 21, 2011

When Taylor Markham was 11, her mother abandoned her in the 7-11 on Jellicoe Road. Six years later, she find herself as the unwilling leader in her school's traditional battle with the Cadets and Townies. But Taylor has a history with the leader of the Cadets, and teen war games begin to take a back seat toward Taylor's journey to discover the truth about her family.

I like stories that weave together seemingly separate narratives. Here there's a novel within the novel, and because of that the first bit of the story can seem a bit disjointed. It's a long while before you get clues as to how things fit together. But Marchetta is such a strong lyrical writer--and I say this as someone who is always complaining that too many YA writers barely manage workmanlike prose at best--that I was sucked into the story along the way. I started reading this during a lunch break, dived back into it during my 15-minute break, and then sat down as soon as I got home and finished it. It was utterly absorbing, and I cried through the last few chapters.

In some ways, this novel is so far removed from the high fantasy of Finnikin of the Rock, but the bones are the same: themes of home and family, both families of choice and families of blood; about surviving loss; about guilt and forgiveness.

I can't wait to read more of Marchetta's work.
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