"Abandoned by her mother on Jellicoe Road when she was eleven, Taylor Markham, now seventeen, is finally being confronted with her past. But as the reluctant leader of her boarding school dorm, there isn't alot of time for introspection. And while Hannah, the closest adult Taylor has to family, has disappeared, Jonah Griggs is back in town, moody stares and all. Nothing is as it seems and every clue leads to morequestions as Taylor tries to work out the connection between her mother dumping her, Hannah finding her then and her sudden departure now, a mysterious stranger who once whispered something in her ear, a boy in her dreams, five kids who lived on Jellicoe Road eighteen years ago, and the maddening and magnetic Jonah Griggs, who knows her better than she thinks he does. If Taylor can put together the pieces of her past, she might just be able to change her future." (GoodReads)
THIS BOOK. Amazing. Did you already know that? Probably. But I have just stumbled into the YA world of Melina Marchetta. And it is glorious.
I am not sure I am as much in lust with Griggs as the rest of the YA-reading world (see here). I’m sorry! I don’t mean to let anyone down! He is hunky and all, but he couldn’t compete for my attention with the beautiful story Hannah is writing, and how it intersects with Taylor’s life. Both stories are about friend’s saving each other but also coming to terms with letting go. Cue the tears!
Jellicoe Road snuck up on me. I got on the train, headed home for Easter, and the ending hit me like a ton of bricks. Books don't usually make me cry, usually its things like Legends of the Fall and the Olympics. ButI cried. In public. For the last thirty pages. The writing is gorgeous and the story all comes together in such an intricate and heart breaking way. I didn't want the book to end, and tried to move on to start Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver (I clearly travel with multiple library books-- a girl has to be prepared) but my mind was just not ready, and that’s saying something because I was dying to get to Pandemonium. Instead I had to sit and think about Taylor and Narnie and Fitz and Webb and how beautiful Jellico Road must be.
- Originality: 10. Mostly because I know literally nothing about Australia (except that they really don’t drink Fosters there). So this was all new to me. On a more legitimate reason for the 10, these characters feel very real.
- Absurdity: Negative 1,000. Who knew I could buy contemporary fiction this much!?
- Level of
ParanormalRomance: 6. Don’t get me wrong, Griggs is dreamy. But he did not steal the top spot on my swoon-worthy chart of YA boys (that chart may or may not exist….yet…)
- Level of Harry Potter-ness.10. Guys, the writing here--it’s incredible. I was on the fence about Marchetta after Finnikin of the Rock, but boy, can she write contemporary fiction. I would throw elbows at MERYL STREEP to get to this book. And I love Meryl—I want to be her daughter and drink wine with her in her house from Its Complicated.