Saturday, June 30, 2012

Review: All These Things I've Done by Gabrielle Zevin

All These Things I've Done (Birthright, #1)
All These Things I've Done by Gabrielle Zevin
Release Date: September 6, 2011
Format: Hardcover, 354 pages
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Series: Birthright #1
Source: Library

Description from Goodreads:
In 2083, chocolate and coffee are illegal, paper is hard to find, water is carefully rationed, and New York City is rife with crime and poverty. And yet, for Anya Balanchine, the sixteen-year-old daughter of the city's most notorious (and dead) crime boss, life is fairly routine. It consists of going to school, taking care of her siblings and her dying grandmother, trying to avoid falling in love with the new assistant D.A.'s son, and avoiding her loser ex-boyfriend. That is until her ex is accidently poisoned by the chocolate her family manufactures and the police think she's to blame. Suddenly, Anya finds herself thrust unwillingly into the spotlight--at school, in the news, and most importantly, within her mafia family.

Engrossing and suspenseful, All These Things I've Done is an utterly unique, unputdownable read that blends both the familiar and the fantastic.

At first glance, All These Things I've Done struck me as silly. The whole idea of chocolate being illegal just seemed like something I'd never be able to take seriously. As the story goes on, though, everything falls into place and just begins to make sense. Once that started to happen, I really liked this book.

First and foremost--the way this book was written. I love the narration from Anya's POV, like she's actually TELLING us what happened. She tells us what she remembers, how she remembers it exactly. She even tells us why some things weren't mentioned and whatnot. It was nice and made Anya feel real, like a friend telling a story.

The relationships in this book also made me happy. Most specifically, the family relationship in this book. Leo--that boy warms my heart. And Natty's a little sweetie as well. Even beyond direct family, to Yuri and Mickey and the extended family. I really like the idea of family looking out for family and am excited to see what becomes of this throughout the series.

Character Rundown: Anya--Anya's okay. What I like best about her is that she's her own person. Strong and self-sufficient. Incredibly smart, too, when it matters. And then there's Win. He's a super nice guy, but that's all we really know about him. Where as Anya's clearly her own person who looks out for her own, Win's just someone who's THERE. Ah, Win. I really really REALLY like Win, but we've learned virtually nothing about him. I hope he becomes more of his own person throughout this series.

The ending. I guess this would be considered a cliff-hanger since it ends in the middle of SOMETHING. I liked how the ending worked with the title, though. That made me smile. All in all, the ending didn't really make me want to slap someone, but I'm really curious about what is coming next for these characters.

Overall, I liked this book, and I will definitely read more of this series once it comes out. This book is so different in a way that becomes truly interesting once you get into it.

All right, that's it, Friends. Have a spectacular day!


  1. Thanks for the review! I won a copy of this (and the sequel) on facebook, but haven't read them yet. They sounded really intriguing, but I have such a long TBR list. I definitely think I'll like them after reading your review. I like books that are a little different.

  2. Awesome review. I've always thought this book was original yet it kept with a few of the dystopian tropes. I liked it a lot, and it made me think. Thanks for the review! :)


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