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.
Favorite Quote: "I tried to be goodly. I tried to be godly. But I got so tired of being ignored.
Cry your grief to God. Howl to the heavens. Tear your shirt. You hair. Your flesh. Gouge out your eyes. Carve out your heart. And what will you get from Him? Only silence. Indifference. But merely stand looking at the playbills, sighing because your name is not on them, and the devil himself appears at your elbow full of sympathy and suggestions.
And that's why I did it. Why I served him. Why I stayed.
Because God loves us, but the devil takes an interest."
This novel was classified as Y.A., but it doesn't read that way. Trust me. I've been suckered into many a Y.A. novel because of the pretty cover and have immediately been disappointed 20 pages in from juvenile writing. I shouldn't ever be shocked by it. Y.A. is, after all, written for juveniles, and there is nothing wrong with that. I took a chance on this one. Partly because of the cover (I get distracted by visually inticing things), and partly because the main character shares the same name as my baby sister (spelling and all).
Sometimes chances pay off.
Anyone that reads this will start to understand that I don't do book reviews the normal way. I'd rather give you the jacket description, and let the story unfold for you, should you choose to read it.
I rather like giving my impressions and opinions.
This Andi, is tortured, immensely so. Grappling with death at a young age and a lack of direction from the adults around her. She's making her way through a world that she doesn't want to be in anymore. The only way she copes is through music...her guitar, and the journal of Alexandrine. She's on the balancing edge of madness. I get that. I can relate.
It will resonate with the angsty adolescent that we all once were. Poignant, not overly dramatic. You'll get it if you suffered as a child. And didn't we all? In one way or another.