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These Shallow Graves by Jennifer Donnelly

These Shallow Graves

by Jennifer Donnelly

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3383132,536 (3.9)15



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So here's a story that takes you to the 1800's. A tale of murder, mystery and romance; what could be better than that? Young Josephine Montfort, is on a mission that's not good for her reputation, her future in marriage, as well as her health! Everything she's not supposed to be doing, she goes up against, for the love of her father. Written by Jennifer Donnelly, this piece of historical fiction is full an adventure for anyone.

While stewing behind the walls of a rich girl's school, discussing kittens and future beaus, Jo wants to become a reporter, healing the world of its atrocities through words, but she's given terrible news. Her father's dead from an apparent accident, but the so-called tragedy doesn't make sense...

Period pieces can sometimes be extremely dull, but not with These Shallow Graves. Not one minute was wasted on blather and Victorian garble. It was direct, carefully detailed without overkill and easy to visualize while reading. Though I figured out who did what, and why, before the telling, it was such a pleasant read. You really should grab a copy, whether audio or physical. I don't think you'll be disappointed.

*For the full review: http://www.areneehunt.com/the-reviews/these-shallow-graves-by-jennifer-donnelly
​I'm off to the next read!
These Shallow Graves
Jennifer Donnelly
Narrated by Kim Bubbs
New Random House
September 23, 2015 ( )
  AReneeHunt | Apr 4, 2017 |
Great mystery. very intriguing plot. Sometimes the romantic aspect was frustrating - but the ending was in my opinion perfect ( )
  pickleroad | Nov 10, 2016 |
A nineteenth century would-be Nellie Bly is hot on uncovering a mystery, with the help of her new, disreputable friends. There is danger, skulduggery, a whole slew of bad guys, and loads of excitement up against a stultifying upper-class life. All the satisfaction of a Nancy Drew story as written by Charles Dickens.

Library copy ( )
  Kaethe | Oct 17, 2016 |
“Fac quod faciendum est.”

Do what must be done.

This is a highly entertaining read! I thought about this book whenever I had to sit it down. I didn’t want to sit it down. This is both historical fiction and a mystery. I love 19th century fiction as reading about how people lived during that time period is fascinating. I can tell Jennifer Donnelly did a lot of research to write this novel as it shows in the details.
The storytelling is wonderfully done, great pacing and I couldn’t wait to find out what happened next. I love how she ended her chapters with the little bombshells and cliffhangers – it was a great way building suspense.

The characters were very vivid, both physically and emotionally. I knew exactly what they looked like as well as their strengths, weakness and fears. The characters are likeable and believable. I loved that some of the characters were majorly screwed up, because imperfect characters add to the charm of the novel.

The protagonist, Jo, is an intelligent, stubborn, courageous, and curious-minded teenager who comes from a wealthy family with old money. I wanted her to have everything that she wanted – all the answers she was seeking and her dreams to come true.

I almost cried at the end. It was perfect. Out of the three biggest surprises, one I guessed correctly, but it was pretty late in the book when I guessed. The other two surprises were complete shockers to me, but I loved that. There were some cleverly placed hints throughout the story, but of course I didn’t realize they were hints at the time. I’d make a terrible detective.

I could see the movie of this novel playing in my mind as I was reading. I hope this novel becomes a movie! I highly recommend this book to fans of YA, historical fiction and mysteries.
( )
  JennysBookBag.com | Sep 28, 2016 |
Narrated by Kim Bubs. Josephine has grown up with wealth and privilege and the cultural strictures that go with them. She longs to become a reporter like her hero Nellie Bly, a profession looked down upon by the upper class. Then her father's suicide turns out to be a murder and Jo risks her and her family's reputation to uncover the truth. Bubs portrays the wide variety of characters with distinctive voices, bringing alive late 19th century New York City for listeners. The story can bog down in parts, as when Jo's romance with news reporter Eddie founders into melodrama. Still there are enough puzzle pieces here to keep listeners guessing at the mystery. ( )
  Salsabrarian | Aug 7, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 31 (next | show all)
These Shallow Graves
By: Jennifer Donnelly
Release Date: October 27, 2015

***** 5 out of 5 stars (TOP PICK 2015)
Review by: Stacy Palm

It’s a Man’s World….

It is not always easy being a woman. Today we hear a lot of discussion about some of the issues we continue to battle as women in society, which is encouraging, but much of the discussion is still surrounding topics brought to light 50 years ago; equal pay, executive positions, and “breaking glass ceilings.” As a woman, and as a mother, these topics are of great importance to me. I make every attempt to support efforts such as those by the HeForShe Organization (www.heforshe.org) and frequently read publications such as The Mary Sue (www.themarysue.com). I believe it is important to also document how much success we have had moving forward as women who are valued and appreciated for both our strengths and our weaknesses. By this point, I’m certain you are thinking, what does all of this have to do with a fictional young adult book review, well, it actually has a lot to do with why I believe this is one of the best books I’ve personally read this year, and why I’m fully promoting it as a TOP PICK for 2015.

These Shallow Graves by Jennifer Donnelly on the surface is an extremely good book. It is a well crafted mystery set in New York during the 1800’s. It is the story of Josephine Montfort, a young debutante, coming of age in high society. Jo quickly found a place in my heart of literary characters because she is smart, determined, driven, and yet naive and sheltered. She has a strong vision about her future, but is hindered by family expectations. Very early in the story a tragedy occurs in the Montfort family, and Jo, with her curious spirit, soon finds herself embroiled on a search for a killer and on a mission to uncover the truth of a crime that occurred many years ago. This also leads Jo to discover some of the most refreshing and captivating supporting cast I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading.

Some of my favorite characters in this book include Fay, the streetwise young grifter that will soon be sold into prostitution, Oscar, the ever so funny coroner intern, and Eddie Gallagher, the young ambitious news reporter who steals Jo’s heart. They are all written so lively that they literally jump off the page and quickly become characters the reader is wholeheartedly connected to.

Underlying the entire story however, is a thread that is deeply convicting and concerns human rights. There is Fay’s story, who soon will be sold into sexual slavery, there is Eddie’s childhood story, growing up on the streets poor and uneducated except for being taken under wing and shown a life of crime, and then there is Jo, who is soon to married off to the wealth Bram in a much contrived business exchange executed by her Uncle and Mother. Thing is the reason this story is so prevalent and one that needs to be read by not only young adults, but anyone who enjoys good fiction with meaning. I do want to stress that at no time was I feeling like the author was “hitting me over the head” with her point. Jennifer Donnelly provided an amazing story and very talentedly weaved concerns that existed in the past and was able to guide the reader in their thinking about how these factors still affect us today. I’m simply cannot put into words how enraptured I was with this story other than to say, “It was simply brilliant!”

Full reviews available at: http://www.thebookendfamily.weebly.co...
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0385737653, Hardcover)

From Jennifer Donnelly, the critically acclaimed New York Times bestselling author of A Northern Light and Revolution, comes a mystery about dark secrets, dirty truths, and the lengths to which people will go for love and revenge. For fans of Elizabeth George and Libba Bray, These Shallow Graves is the story of how much a young woman is willing to risk and lose in order to find the truth.
    Jo Montfort is beautiful and rich, and soon—like all the girls in her class—she’ll graduate from finishing school and be married off to a wealthy bachelor. Which is the last thing she wants. Jo dreams of becoming a writer—a newspaper reporter like the trailblazing Nellie Bly.
    Wild aspirations aside, Jo’s life seems perfect until tragedy strikes: her father is found dead. Charles Montfort shot himself while cleaning his pistol. One of New York City’s wealthiest men, he owned a newspaper and was a partner in a massive shipping firm, and Jo knows he was far too smart to clean a loaded gun.
    The more Jo hears about her father’s death, the more something feels wrong. Suicide is the only logical explanation, and of course people have started talking, but Jo’s father would never have resorted to that. And then she meets Eddie—a young, smart, infuriatingly handsome reporter at her father’s newspaper—and it becomes all too clear how much she stands to lose if she keeps searching for the truth. But now it might be too late to stop.
    The past never stays buried forever. Life is dirtier than Jo Montfort could ever have imagined, and this time the truth is the dirtiest part of all.

Early Praise for These Shallow Graves:

"These Shallow Graves delivered all that I adore: lovely prose, historical intrigue, unique chracters and setting. I devoured this book!"-Ruta Sepetys, New York Times bestselling author of Between Shades of Gray and Out of the Easy

"An intelligent, personable heroine-Jo Montfort's hopes for an enlightened future uncover a dark past, resulting in a splendidly hair-raising tour of the brightest and darkest corners of Victorian New York."-Elizabeth Wein, New York Times bestselling author of Code Name Verity and Black Dove, White Raven

"Jo Montfort is a gutsy modern heroine in a beguiling tale of old New York. Money, murder, betrayal, and family secrets....I loved spending time in this world!"-Elizabeth Ross, author of William C. Morris Award finalist Belle Epoque

"A fast-paced Gilded Age crime thriller that plunges its intrepid investigative-journalist heroine into the sordid underworld of nineteenth-century New York City and into her own family's dark secrets."-Julie Berry, award-winning author of All the Truth That's In Me

(retrieved from Amazon Sun, 05 Jul 2015 04:09:57 -0400)

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