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Review: ALL THESE THINGS I’VE DONE by Gabrielle Zevin

Posted by on September 19, 2011
All These Things I've Done (Birthright, #1) 
Gabrielle Zevin
354 pages
Publisher: Macmillian
Release Date: September 6th, 2011
Source: ARC from Publisher
Rating: LOVED

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.

    Heart-wrenching and heart-warming, All These Things I’ve Done is an amazing addition young-adult literature. A promising, strong heroine, a unique plot, and characters you’ll feel for – Gabrielle Zevin’s latest has it all.

    Anya Balanchine is a character we can all connect to. A young girl just as flawed as the rest of us, but stronger and tortured in a way you can never expect. With her mother and father murdered, Anya has to take care of her family. But she isn’t the oldest. Her older brother, handsome Leo, is disabled, her grandmother hangs on to life by a thin thread.

    As the oldest of four siblings, I know how it is to be responsible. But without my parents, I would most likely be in an asylum. Anya is different. Strong, flawed, no doubt, but strong and willed.

Though this novel certainly isn’t one for fast-paced action, the story is astounding. The pages will be wet with your sweat, and maybe even your tears. I never knew which way the story would turn, but I could tell there was only pain and sorrow in Anya’s life.

    All These Things I’ve Done is a novel I have to say I loved. With a strong female protagonist and a life of mafia, Gabrielle Zevin’s latest is a riveting must read.

Find Gabrielle on Goodreads | Website | Twitter

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  1. YAY! I'm so glad that you liked this book, Hafsah. I've read “so-so” reviews about it but I really like this author and was hoping this one would be as good as her others. I know feel much more confident in picking it up. Thanks for the review!

  2. Sounds like an intense read Hafsah, I'm really looking forward to it! Though a world with no chocolate might actually give me nightmares:) I need chocolate to live.

  3. I loved this book, too! Anya was such a great protagonist, and I loved the writing style! Fab review, Hafsah! :)
    (Also, I'm totally late in noticing this, but I love your new blog header!)

  4. This is one of the books I'm juggling right now. Can't seem to make up my mind what to read! Glad you loved it. It sounds like a thrilling and emotional read.

  5. I have been looking forward to this story for a long time I really need to get a copy of this one soon. Thanks for the great review I love to be on the edge of my seat with a book, never knowing if I'll laugh or cry.

  6. wow from your review i think this book would be a book i would really enjoy!

    thanks alot, ive been very hesitant on whether to even read this because i barely have time for anything nowadays!

    – juhina

  7. Wow! This review is certainly quite different from others I've read. This is the first I've heard of any hint of sadness in the book. I always imagined there'd be a great deal of action and danger due to the whole mafia aspect, but at least now I know what to expect. I just bought a copy of one of Zevin's earlier work- The Hole We're In- and gave it to my mother to read. She loved it! She usually doesn't love anything but romance, so I find it encouraging and certainly plan on reading this book.

    Sarah Bibi Setar

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