"BROOKLYN: Andi Alpers is on the edge. She’s angry at her father for leaving, angry at her mother for not being able to cope, and heartbroken by the loss of her younger brother, Truman. Rage and grief are destroying her. And she’s about to be expelled from Brooklyn Heights’ most prestigious private school when her father intervenes. Now Andi must accompany him to Paris for winter break.
PARIS: Alexandrine Paradis lived over two centuries ago. She dreamed of making her mark on the Paris stage, but a fateful encounter with a doomed prince of France cast her in a tragic role she didn’t want—and couldn’t escape.
Two girls, two centuries apart. One never knowing the other. But when Andi finds Alexandrine’s diary, she recognizes something in her words and is moved to the point of obsession. There’s comfort and distraction for Andi in the journal’s antique pages—until, on a midnight journey through the catacombs of Paris, Alexandrine’s words transcend paper and time, and the past becomes suddenly, terrifyingly present. "-Goodreads
This was my first historical fiction read. . . what did I think? Well, lets just say this book has made it to my favorites along with Jennifer Donnelly as a favorite author.
Doesn't that last sentence of the summary just send chills up your spine? Me too! I love it! The premise for this book is amazing. The plot is well thought out before-hand so that everything falls into place. Not perfectly but at least your questions get answers. Don't you hate it when your left with questions? I do. This is a beautiful story that blends two girls accounts together, two centuries apart into a stunning read.
The characters were exciting because they were so real. Andi. . . in the beginning of this book I was nervous with her because she was always entertaining the thought of suicide but then as the book progressed I began to pity her then by the middle of the book I felt her. I felt her pain, why she was doing/saying what she did, I understood her. I could feel how much music meant to her, it was all she had. Same with Alex. I felt what she was feeling as I read, I felt the love of Louis-Charles. The other characters like Andi's mom (I felt terrible for her), Andi's dad, G, Lili, Jules, and even Vijay (Andi's best friend) were all well developed too. They were real characters not one sided. I can't forget about Virgil, I loved his character. He had a great story and I really enjoyed when Andi and him interacted.
Jennifer did an ah-mazing job with the writing style. It's so beautiful to read. It was like poetry when reading about how Andi looked to music. I was just awed at how the book conveyed each feeling. This book sucked me into the story, I was literally glued to it! It was awesome. Also, a huge part was how much I learned! There was so much history in here--not too overwhelming but enough that I knew what it was like in that century. I really enjoyed how she found the diary too, I thought that was the neatest thing! Not to mention when she goes back to that century, can you say on-the-edge-of-your-seat excitement?
This story with have you gushing when your done. It is a beautiful, compelling read that will have you turning pages until the last one. Unputdownalbe!! I strongly recommend this book to everyone!
I put the guitar into its case and head for an exit. Front door. Back door. Window. Anything. When I'm halfway across the living room, I feel a hand close on my arm.
"Come on. It's eight-fifteen."
It's Vijay Gupta. President of the Honor Society, the debate team, the Chess Club, and the Model United Nations. Volunteer at a soup kitchen, a literacy center, and the ASPCA. Davidson Fellow, Presidential Scholar candidate, winner of a Princeton University poetry prize, but, alas, not a cancer survivor.
Orla McBride is a cancer survivor, and she wrote about it for her college apps and got into Harvard early admission. Chemo and hair loss and throwing up pieces of your stomach beat the usual extracurriculars hands down. Vijay only got wait-listed, so he still has to go to class.
"I'm not going," I tell him. "Why not?"
I shake my head.
"What is it?"
Vijay is my best friend. My only friend, at this stage. I have no idea why he's still around. I think he sees me as some kind of rehabilitation project, like the loser dogs he cares for at the shelter.
"Andi, come on," he says. "You've got to. You've got to get your outline in. Beezie'll throw you out if you don't. She threw two seniors out last year for not turning it in."
"I know. But I'm not."
Vijay gives me a worried look. "You take your meds today?" he asks. "I did."
He sighs. "Catch you later."
"Yeah, V. Later."
I head out of the Castle van Epp, down to the Promenade. It's snowing. I take a seat high above the BQE, stare at Manhattan for a bit, and then I play. For hours. I play until my fingertips are raw. Until I rip a nail and bleed on the strings. Until my hands hurt so bad I forget my heart does.