All These Things I’ve Done (Birthright #1) by Gabrielle Zevin

All These Things I've Done (Birthright, #1)Hardcover

354 pages
Published  September 6th 2011
by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
  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 accidentally 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.

This Book Contains:  Crime, Violence, Death, Romance, and Gangsters.

CHARACTERS:

Anya Balanchine I liked a lot she is tough and focused on taking care of her family at all cost.  Win is a little too  sweet at times and I think that he didn’t alway express his feelings because of his fear that Anya would push him away.  Scarlet is a great best friend, very loyal and determined to help Anya with anything she can.  Scarlet does find herself following a relationship that may cause problems for her but so has many other girls.  You have the “Family” which may or may not have Anya’s family best interest at heart.  I love Leo he is mentally disabled but he has so much pride and love for his family that it just makes his character that much more endearing. 

MY THOUGHTS:

I had put off reading this book because the cover and synopsis didn’t draw me in.  I found it on audio at the library and thought I would try listening to it.   Wow, was I impressed with this book!  It is labeled dystopian but it didn’t have the war-torn dystopian feel that most have.  It just start off with things been rationed and things being banned such as chocolate.  You never got and explanation to why things were the way they were, but it never felt that you really needed to know.  The story was just so strong that you didn’t miss those details.  Which I find exceptional because a lot of books would lack in a believable storyline without adding those details. I never once found this story to be lacking in anything.   The author focused her energy and time on the actual characters so, that is where your focus is drawn. I was sucked into this book from the first chapter and couldn’t stop until I was finished with it.

Anya reminds me of Kat Bishop from “Heist Society” , who happens to be one of my top ten favorite female protagonist.  They are both strong females with criminal family ties and they both want to keep their family safe while doing what is right in their minds.   I have a feeling that as I continue with this series Anya will end up rising to my top ten.  She is flawed, tough and is full of love for her family and that is what makes a character great to me.  I connected with Anya and could visualize what she was going through.  Very seldom can you connect to a character so much so, that you can feel the emotions that they are felt as the author describes them.  I think that is why I am hooked on this book and will be waiting anxiously for the next installment.

 

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