Readers greet old friends in this final book of the Rose Trilogy, about life in the early twentieth century, complete with explorers, daredevils, immigrants, criminals, spies, and high-society dilettantes. Donnelly cleverly intertwines the stories from The Tea Rose (2002) and The Winter Rose (2008) to remind us of what went on before this even-more tumultuous and deliciously long saga, set in the unsettled years prior to the Great War. The “wild rose” of the title is Willa Alden, a wiry and wounded mountaineer living near Mount Everest and working as a photographer for the National Geographic Society after the accident that took her leg and her lover. In a complex web of plots and surprise coincidences, two men, neither quite who they seem, are inexorably drawn to Willa. Subplots and descriptive details lend a realistic sense of everyday life at the time, reflecting the wide class chasm and portraying how one woman can change the lives of so many. Willa is a conflicted character readers won’t forget. This time around, Donnelly has leaned more toward Indiana Jones than Barbara Taylor Bradford, and the result is a perfect vacation read.
...implacably energetic...enjoy the ride: 600-plus pages of romance, harrowing exploits, cinematic backdrops, cliffhangers, and plot twists.
Donnelly skillfully integrates historical detail while entwining multiple plotlines in a fast-paced narrative. Readers of the earlier books will be especially eager for this volume, which should also earn the author new fans.
Praise From the Blogosphere:
This book will engage all your emotions. You’ll find yourself laughing, crying, smiling, and sighing...This book is wonderfully written. I was impressed by the seven pages of bibliography the author listed at the end. I did not read the previous two books, but did not feel lost because of it. This is a book I HIGHLY recommend. I gave it 5 out of 5 stars.
— Seduced by a Book
The Wild Rose is a very well written book that is replete with intricate sub-plots and complex, well-crafted characters whose relationships cross and re-cross each other...all seamlessly presented....extremely readable...I was fascinated by Ms. Donnelly’s careful research...This book is rife with well-fleshed characters, intertwined relationships, excellent adventures and a solid taste for the historical importance of this amazing period...the sunset of the Golden Age and the beginning of the world’s introduction to the real horrors of modern warfare. (Five Stars)
— Books by the Willow Tree
Rights sold in Australia/New Zealand, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, and the Netherlands.
Also available from Recorded Books as an audiobook. Read by Jill Tanner. Order here: http://www.recordedbooks.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=rb.show_prod&book_id=89860&consumer
2012 CILIP Carnegie Medal Nominee
Young Adult Book of the Year, New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association
Young Adult Book of the Year, American Booksellers Association / Indiebound
ALA-YALSA Top Ten Best Fiction for Young Adults
VOYA "Perfect Ten" Book
Kirkus Reviews Best Young Adult Books
School Library Journal Best Books of the Year
Bulletin Blue Ribbon Book
Amazon.com Best Books
BN.com Best Teen Books
Chicago Public Library Best of the Best Book
Capitol Choice Noteworthy Book
Parents’ Choice Silver Award
American Library Association Odysssey Honor Audiobook
Kirkus Reviews Starred Review
Printz Honor winner Donnelly combines compelling historical fiction with a frank contemporary story. Andi is brilliantly realized, complete and complex. The novel is rich with detail, and both the Brooklyn and Paris settings provide important grounding for the haunting and beautifully told story.
School Library Journal Starred Review
Revolution is a sumptuous feast of a novel, rich in mood, character, and emotion.
The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books Starred Review
Every detail is meticulously
inscribed into a multi-layered narrative that is as wise, honest, and
moving as it is cunningly worked. Andi and Alex are flawed artists,
creatures of their time but also timeless in their self-absorption and
aching need for forgiveness and redemption. The interplay between the
contemporary and the historical is seamless in both plot and theme, and
the storytelling grips hard and doesn’t let go. Readers fascinated with
French history, the power of music, and/or contemporary realist fiction will find this brilliantly crafted work utterly absorbing.
This is a great example of young adult fiction: beautifully written and thoroughly researched ...There is an emotional vividness and a delight in story that will speak strongly to teenagers. I hope Donnelly returns to the genre a little sooner next time.
The New York Times Book Review
... genuine heart ...
As in her previous novel for young adults, the award-winning A Northern Light, Jennifer Donnelly combines impeccable historical research with lively, fully fashioned characters to create an indelible narrative. Revolution is a complex story, moving back and forth in time and including allusions not only to historical events but also to literature (especially Dante’s Divine Comedy) and to music from Handel to Wagner to Radiohead. Yet this undeniably cerebral book is also simultaneously wise and achingly poignant.
Donnelly follows her Printz Honor Book, A Northern Light (2003), with another gripping, sophisticated story, but this time she pairs historical fiction with a wrenching contemporary plotline ... the ambitious story, narrated in Andi’s grief-soaked, sardonic voice, will wholly capture ...
The Bookseller (U.K.)
Donnelly's first teenage novel since 2003's A Gathering Light [A Northern Light in the U.S.] is another triumph. She brilliantly weaves the story of the French Revolution with that of Andi, an utterly engaging 21st-century American. My book of the month -- if not the year ...
I hate the term "crossover book" but this genuinely is one -- intelligent, absorbing and original
Donnelly (A Northern Light) melds contemporary teen drama with well-researched historical fiction ... worthy stuff. Musicians, especially, will appreciate the thread about the debt rock owes to the classics. ... Even kids who don’t usually like historical fiction won’t be able to put Revolution down, especially given its great modern-day story.
Ranked by Indiebound as the #1 Pick on its Fall 2010 Kids' Next List
Praise from Independent Booksellers:
“How much did I love Jennifer Donnelly's Revolution? So much that I can't even describe it. This book is simply brilliant; a page-turner with an amazingly complicated protagonist and a pitch-perfect mix of the contemporary with the historical. Revolution is not to be missed ...”
—Suzanna Hermans, Oblong Books & Music, Rhinebeck, NY
"Revolution is an epic story about truth and forgiveness, about music and history, about fraternity and liberty, about family and blood. Andi's narration swept me off the page and into her world, from halls of her snide prep school to the darkest catacombs beneath Paris, and I rooted for her every step of the way. This beautiful novel deserves its own fireworks display, and if Revolution had a soundtrack, I would put it on repeat."
—Sarah Todd, Children’s Book World, Haverford, PA
“What begins as an emotional, contemporary teen drama becomes so much more as Donnelly conflates the worlds of two characters separated by over two hundred years. The story of Andi and Alex is engrossing, terrifying, heartbreaking and meaningful. Donnelly's artful, experienced treatment of the French Revolution combined with spot-on contemporary writing is sure to garner Donnelly new fans."
—Angela Sherrill, 57th Street Books, Chicago, IL
Praise from the Blogosphere:
Revolution is a beautiful, meticulously researched, and realistic novel full of music and words that have the power to heal, and the ability to transcend centuries of time. It goes beyond all description, and it will resonate deeply with you. You simply must read it.
—The Compulsive Reader
This book combines so many amazing themes: grief and healing, the transformative power of music, and the things we do for love. And of course, there's also the theme of revolution -- that which exists in the bigger world and that which happens in our own souls. This was a great, compelling read, and it's a title I'll be thinking about for a long, long time.
—Kate Messner's Book Blog
holy hell, that was powerful ... i am working on very little sleep & probably need at least a liter of gatorade to replenish the electrolytes i shed through my tear & snot ducts. i seem to cry over fiction a lot lately, but f-bomb, this was like an exorcism. i finished it smarter, full of ideas, and wanting desperately to be better and more and if not different, somehow enhanced, to squeeze every drop out of everything & stop waiting for fear of ... fear?
—smoreads, posted on goodreads.com
I loved Andi's voice. Her snark, her way of looking at things, her heartbreak and vulnerability, and in particular, her love of music, all made her incredibly real.
I read most of Revolution‘s nearly 500 pages in a single night, telling myself I would stop after another chapter, and then another and another, until I finally collapsed in the early morning. I got swept away in Donnelly’s vivid writing and impeccably researched prose.
[Revolution] was friggin' amazing. It combines history with the present, paints a tragically beautiful and garish picture of the revolution and life, and I can't wait for it to come out for real so I can have my own copy.
Rights sold in France, Germany, Greece, Israel, Russia, and the UK.
Also available from Listening Library as an audiobook. Read by Emily Janice Card and Emma Bering. (Listen)
Barbara Taylor Bradford
I loved this book. It is truly seductive, hard to put down, filled with mystery, secret passions, unique locations, and a most engaging heroine. India Selwyn Jones is a new breed of woman in London in 1900, a doctor practicing in the grim East End, and she captivates from the first page to the last.
If Jennifer Donnelly doesn't watch out, she's going to get a reputation. With publication of The Winter Rose, she proves that her first fast, fat and fun historical romance -- 2002's The Tea Rose -- wasn't a fluke. . . . There's . . . a big helping of lively dialogue and an abundance of convincing period detail. . . . Donnelly can work all this in because her novel is upwards of 700 pages. But you're unlikely to notice because she's a master of pacing and plot, with enough high points scattered throughout to keep your pulse racing, from a manhunt in a rat-filled London tunnel to a child missing on the African plains (the book's final section takes place in Kenya.) I became so consumed with finding out how it would end that I read the last third at near-choking speed. I just had to know: happy or not happy? I imagine you will, too.
Jennifer Donnelly is one of the most uniquely gifted authors working in the world today, and her new novel, The Winter Rose, only confirms her place among the elite writers of epic historical fiction…Lyrical and captivating, The Winter Rose is an astounding work that will speak to your heart.
…the action never lets up, from back-alley beatings and gunrunning, to bordellos, society drawing rooms, and the corridors of elitist government. This is a page-turner…Mix Gangs of New York, Romeo and Juliet, and Oliver Twist, and get a passionate tale propelled by sophisticated plotting, cleverly disguised motives, and intriguingly entangled characters.
In epic style, Donnelly alternates India’s story with Sid’s, Freddie’s, Joseph’s and Fiona’s, leading the reader through turn-of- the-century England from the Houses of Parliament to ale houses and whore houses, and from London to Africa and beyond… Donnelly’s passion and energy will keep readers turning the many pages, rooting for India and the gruff underworld boss she loves.
A historical page-turner along the lines of Barbara Taylor Bradford’s A Woman of Substance. Recommended.
So vividly imagined that it’s like time-travelling back to 1900.
A vivid and entertaining read…it’s a brilliant story.
www.hagsharlotsheroines.com Book of the Month
A great read with fabulous characters, plenty of historical drama and romance, as well political intrigue and moments of sumptuously gothic excess.
Herald Sun, Australia
A HUGE epic of a novel following the fortunes and the downfalls of several families from both sides of the tracks in early 20th-century London. Against a well-researched background of political unrest and the beginnings of the union movement, it brings this period vividly to life. The heroine is India Selwyn Jones, a headstrong young woman who defies her aristocratic parents to become a doctor. She is determined to use her knowledge to make a difference in the lives of London’s poor. But then she meets Sid Malone, an attractive but notorious gangster, and finds herself gradually drawn to him. In a word: page-turner.
Rights sold in France, Germany, Greece, the Netherlands, Australia/New Zealand, Hungary, Italy, and the UK.
Carnegie Medal Winner, United Kingdom
Los Angeles Times Book Prize Winner
Borders 2004 Original Voices Award Winner
Named a Printz Honor Book by the ALA
Awarded a De Gouden Zoen Honor, The Netherlands
Named a Top Ten Best Book for Young Adults by the ALA
Named a Best Book of 2003
Publishers Weekly, Booklist, School Library Journal, The Irish Times, The Times (London), The Financial Times and The Albany Times-Union.
Chosen by amazon.com as a top teen title for 2003
New York Times Book Review
Jennifer Donnelly has populated her first young-adult novel with a community of distinctive characters who ring rich and true, and grounded it in the often horrific realities of rural life a century ago. We don't just root for Mattie; we come to understand and cherish her.
The Christian Science Monitor
A Northern Light is a quintessential coming-of-age story ... exceptionally well told. Honest and unflinching in its portrayal of loss, poverty, racism, and pregnancy, it nonetheless avoids melodrama and polemic. And its witty and oddball supporting cast (a renegade poet teacher, an encouraging schoolmate, and a handsome but dull next door neighbor) add complexity and color to Mattie's journey. The best thing about this book, however, is Mattie's smart, vulnerable voice. We share her desires, if not her unique challenges, on every page.
Haunting and powerfully written ...
The San Diego Union-Tribune
...(a) truly great novel, Donnelly's first for young adults...Elegantly structured between present and past, the story looks deeply into Mattie's life and where and when she lives it, at racism, poverty, loss and circumstance. It's an epic attempt, thoughtfully conceived and artfully executed.
Booklist, Starred Review
... (an) ambitious, beautifully written coming-of-age story ... Many teens will connect with Mattie's fierce yearning for independence and for stories, like her own, that are frank, messy, complicated and inspiring.
School Library Journal, Starred Review
This is a breathtaking tale, complex and often earthy ... Donnelly's characters ring true to life, and the meticulously detailed setting forms a vivid backdrop to this finely crafted story
The Toronto Star
Donnelly's rewarding, multilayered novel is written with delightful earthy vigour. She ranges from broad humour to frank, incisive literary criticism. But it's honest, passionate Mattie who carries the tale, as she strives to see clearly and act well. Funny, moving and intelligent, A Northern Light offers valuable perspective on the women who came before.
Adele Geras, in The Guardian
This is a wonderfully rich, involving and beautifully written book. The back cover blurb call is "the debut of an incredibly assured and confident literary voice.' My sentiments exactly.
The Glasgow Hearald
A captivating book with a universal, timeless feel.
A sensitive, powerfully written first-person narrative set in New York state in 1906, full of contrasts in scene, tone and character... It is a striking first novel that will haunt readers long after closing the book.
The Times (London)
This is surely one of the year's best young-adult novels ... The novel is about race, class and wealth, about dreams and compromises, the nature of duty and the history of women. Above all, it's a book to lose yourself in.
The Financial Times
Ö(a) mesermerising story of a young girl's growing awareness of love, life and liberationÖThe story of Grace Brown is a true one; and the skill with which Donnelly, in her first book for young adults, weaves it together with that of an unforgettable young heroine is deeply impressive.
Nobody got fed while I read ... if George Clooney had walked in to the room I would have told him to come back later when I'd finished. When I slept I returned to it in my dreams. It's an extreme reaction to a book that is on the surface as placid and gentle as the lakes and hills of the turn-of-the-20th-century Adirondacks where it is set but then this novel is the very definition of "all-consuming". Mattie is a heroine on a par with Jo in Little Women or Cassandra in I Capture the Castle. Donnelly captures period and place with almost supernatural skill, and even the most minor of characters are so vivid that you find your self talking out loud to them.
A breaktakingly good first novel ... The dead woman's and Mattie's stories intersect and expand like ripples on the surface of the lake.
This stunning multi-layered story deals with coming of age, the compatibility of writing and having children, sex, family relationships, racism, the plight of immigrants and almost inescapable trap of poverty. Packed with unforgettable characters and packaged in an equally stunning cover ... a book to treasure.
Sunday Tribune, Ireland
A book that encapsulates so much life between its covers it leaves the reader with a huge sense of regret on finishing...with a host of believable characters in a place that throbs with atmosphere, this multi-layered novel is a compelling read for adults and teenagers.
The Independent Magazine
The first novel by an American writer of promise.
South China Morning Post
... unquestionably one of the year's top reads. It is a spellbinding and moving story ... Donnelly brilliantly conjures up in gripping details of rural life ... she also creates a cast of characters who are compelling and utterly believable. All this results in a novel that sweeps you up with its originality and scope ... an unforgettable book to lose yourself in and to thoroughly enjoy reading.'
Book Sense #1 Teen Fiction Pick
This amazing novel chronicles the life of Mathilda in upstate New York. Told in alternating times of early spring and late summer, she is torn between going to college and keeping her promise to her dying mother to stay and take take care of the family. This is absolutely the best book I have read in years. See the entire Book Sense list.
Chosen by the Junior Library Guild as a 2003 selection.
Selected by Borders bookstore for its Original Voices program.
Scott Turow, Author of Reversible Errors and Presumed Innocent
A Northern Light is a remarkable debut, a book that sweeps across the genre boundaries of murder mystery, romance, and historical fiction -- resulting in an original novel that is both gripping and touching.
M.T. Anderson, Author of Feed, a National Book Award Finalist
A lyrical evocation of a vanished age ... Every page of Mattie Gokey's story has its surprising little insight: an image, a meditation, or some unexpected revelation. She is truly a narrator in love with language, and her enthusiasm for the word is infectious.
Rights sold in Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Holland, Italy, Norway, Portugal, Serbia, Sweden, Brazil, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Spain and the UK
Available from Listening Library as an audio book. Read by Hope Davis. (Listen)
Steeped in melodrama, revenge and a maddeningly star-crossed romance, The Tea Rose is a fine yarn ... Bottom line: Guilty pleasure.
Ms. Donnelly's work is in a class by itself. From the slums of Whitechapel to the glittering streets of New York in the Gay '90s, readers are in for a rollicking good time with an unforgettable cast of characters.
So much fun ... the atmosphere of both starring cities is created in satisfying detail. One can walk the streets and listen to the people chat in the company of Jennifer Donnelly, who has done her historical homework.
Romantic Times Book Club Top Pick
In the tradition of an epic historical novel, Ms. Donnelly's tale pulls the reader into its emotional depths and refuses to let go. Fiona Finnegan is a remarkable heroine, remaining true to her principles no matter the cost.
Donnelly indulges in delightfully straightforward storytelling in this comfortably overstuffed novel...the novel's lively plotting, big cast of warmly drawn characters and long-deferred romantic denouement make this a ripping yarn. In the final dramatic settling of scores, Donnelly even ventures to unmask Jack the Ripper.
In the tradition of Barbara Taylor Bradford, Donnelly has written the saga of one woman's remarkable rise from poverty to wealth. Growing up in London's bustling East End, feisty Fiona Finnegan is a member of a respectable working-class family. When her beloved father becomes involved in organizing a dockworker's union, he is brutally murdered, forcing her mother and siblings to abandon the comfort and security of their modest home. After her family is shattered by tragedy and she loses the love of her life, Fiona flees to America, vowing to destroy the man she holds responsible for her father's death. During the course of an eventful 10 years, she forges a tremendous business empire based in the tea trade and acquires the financial means to wreak her painstakingly plotted revenge. Returning to London, she must face the heart-wrenching ghosts of her own past in order to reshape her destiny and reclaim her future. Steeped in romance and authentic period detail, this exquisite melodrama will appeal to fans of epic historical fiction.
Frank McCourt, Author of Angela's Ashes
When you start reading The Tea Rose, give yourself plenty of time because this is a most seductive novel. You will travel from the rough, often savage, backstreets of London to the glossy sophistication of New York's Fifth Avenue. You'll be charmed by the novel's heroine, Fiona Finnegan -- by her intelligence, her courage, her great heart. Despite her suffering -- a lost love, a tragic family -- there are moments you will want to cheer. It's the kind of novel where the writing is so fluid, you feel the author simply loves telling her story. This is a splendid, heartwarming novel of pain, struggle, decency, triumph -- and just what we need in these times.
Simon Winchester, Author of The Professor and the Madman
I loved this vividly atmospheric and wonderfully rumbustious yarn ... brilliantly told, great fun to read.
Samuel H.G. Twining, LVO, OBE, Director of Twinings Tea
Bold, brisk and beguiling, The Tea Rose is a splendid brew of a book.
Paula Cohen, Author of Gramercy Park
The Tea Rose is the kind of book that calls for a rainy day, a cozy chair, and a good steaming cup of tea. It's strong and satisfying, with a taste that lingers in the memory.
Rights sold in Brazil, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Russia, Serbia, Spain, Thailand, Australia/New Zealand and the UK.
A dynamite union of a debut author with a veteran illustrator teaches a wry lesson ... Gammell's unmistakable illustrations, full of mischief and all of his splattery details, hold just the right amount of waggish exaggeration and expression, and suit the antic wit of the telling perfectly. Yum.
... an impish sense of fun that will have young readers happily following along and cheering for Theo's comeuppance.
...fresh and funny...