Maree's Reviews > Revolution

Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly
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's review
Jul 27, 2011

really liked it
Read from July 26 to 27, 2011

Having read the book Timeless in the last few months for a group read, where the young protagonist jumps back and forth through time for seemingly no particular reason (see my unhappy review here) I was expecting much the same from Revolution. But to my surprise and delight, this was actually a far more reasonable text, as Andi deals with drugs, thoughts of suicide, and the way her family has fallen apart over the death of her little brother a few years ago. It's much more realistic than a lot of the YA out there these days, and if you know me, you know I love me my realism. Though of course there is the time travel part. Which I kept expecting to happen, since it was in the book summary, but Donnelly waited until the very end and only did it once, and in such as way that most of it could be stretched to be explained by drugs. But not quite all. :)

The character of Andi is incredibly detailed, going about her life as best she can in a drug-prescribed daze when it all gets to be too bad. Her mother and father are equally realistic; her mother as an obsessed painter who hasn't gotten over the horrific death of her 10 year old son and her father, the work-obsessed divorce who is now starting his own new family with his 25 year old pregnant girlfriend. The arguments Andi and her father have, along with their inability to talk and understand one another, are just amazing. I was especially chilled by a discussion they had where Andi was pouring out her musical heart, talking about her thesis as her father was asking questions, and then she realized that he was only asking because he wanted to make sure she was going to get her homework done. His goal wasn't to discuss her enjoyment of the subject, but to insure she got a good grade and could go on to college at Stanford, not a music school like she'd prefer. I also deeply appreciated how at the end (view spoiler)

Once she went time traveling, I was expecting her to go in and save the day, rescue the prince from the tower (yes, I was quite pleased with the switch there, serious as it's played) and change the past. But once again realism won out. There was no cutsy happy ending, no change that made everything wonderful again. It was simply the acceptance of all that had happened that made the end of the book perfect. No fairy tale, but the reality of live in today's day and age.
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