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Saving Francesca by Melina Marchetta
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Saving Francesca (2003)

by Melina Marchetta

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914629,616 (4.12)42
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Showing 1-5 of 60 (next | show all)
Really, could I expect anything less? ( )
  Summer_Missfictional | May 23, 2014 |
My emotions spun round

Round and
round and
round

I smiled

cried
laughed
weeped
grimaced
smirked
bawled
grinned

A Masterpiece
That's what Saving Francesca is.

Okay, that was my first "review poem". I want to start doing these regularly. Something unique to go with Counting in Bookcases. How did you like it?

As indicated by the poem above, I really enjoyed this book. Only a truly good book can evoke so much emotion. Really, I felt the whole time I was either laughing or flat-out bawling.

Saving Francesca really pulls at your heartstrings. Ultimately, it is about a girl who loses the strong, leader-like mother she knows to acute depression. Francesca suddenly has no one to tell her who she is, or to give advice.

Francesca is on her own to find friends. And finding good friends at "a school that pretend's it's coed by giving the girls their own bathroom" is kind of hard. Also, Francesca has family problems to figure out, including her aunt's wedding, her fathers guilt, and her grandmas stolen S biscuit recipe.

The characters, and Francesca's voice are what makes this such a good novel. You have the funny characters, who are deeper than they seem. You have the opinionated characters, who take great care of their friends. You have characters looking for their personality, when it is right there all along, just hidden. You have the shy characters, sweet characters, eccentric characters.

And, meanwhile, Francesca is telling the story, with her voice that is so real it cracks open your heart. You love her sarcastic comments, scattered thoughts, fragile outlook, growing opinions, angry moods, and "journey to self discovery".

You will grow to love Francesca, Mia, Thomas, Tara, Justine, Siobhan, Will, and Luca. I strongly recommend you read this. It is not exciting or action filled, but it is filled with things that happen to someone everyday but people fail to realize what they are feeling. Marchetta strikes truth in this amazing novel.


5/5 bookcases ( )
  Emily_Anne | Mar 16, 2014 |
Three and a half stars. ( )
  CaliSoleil | Mar 5, 2014 |
3.5 -ish

I absolutely LOVE Marchetta's writing. I love the characters she comes up with and Francesca was no surprise in that department.I think every teenager can relate to being caught up in peer-pressure and trying to act ~cooler, quieter, dumber, etc for the sake of their own social status. I think this point comes across really well in Franscesca and her various issues.

The secondary characters were my absolute favourite thing about this book, especially Jimmy and Thomas! The friendship the unlikely group of girls was able to forge really warmed my heart.

So where were my issues with this book?

The depression thing. I just don't get the way it is approached. As someone who has experienced these kind of issues first hand, I really,have an issue with the fact that she "doesn't want to take pills"...erm. OK. I guess that's ultimately a personal choice, but to not go to a doctor at all? To no actively seak help, especially when you're a mom, responsible for two kids and the well-being of a whole family? Sorry, don't get that. ( )
  joanasimao | Sep 28, 2013 |
This was actually more like a 2...2.5 for me, but I was won over by the last 5% or so of this book, so I'm rounding up.

I've heard so many good things about Marchetta's writing that I went into this with high hopes. Unfortunately, those hopes were dashed quite early on. I don't know if it was my particular copy of the ebook I had or what, but I felt like I was missing huge chunks of the story. The editing and flow was really quite bad. I saw someone else mention this in their review of an ebook, so I don't know if there's just a bum copy out there or what. But I will say that it greatly affected my enjoyment, and subsequently, my rating.

We meet Francesca and she's likable enough. It's told in first person narration, and I actually generally really enjoy books like that. However, I just could not connect with her. This book is incredibly melancholy. It deals with a delicate subject (depression in both her and her mother) and while I think that's great that the author tackled that, I just couldn't connect with any of the characters.

The story itself was slow moving and choppy. At one point I wondered where I'd been when Francesca had fallen in love, because God knows I never read about much more than a very small handful of stilted encounters with her and The Boy (again - maybe passages missing in the ebook? idk idk idk).

The secondary characters actually stole the show for me. I really loved her new friends at the school, and the makeshift family they created.

The tiny glimpse I got in the end of this book left me happy with it. I enjoyed the last 20ish pages, but I can honestly say those were the only 20 of the entire book that I did.

Also, for the love of God, can someone please tell me why she referred to the boys by their first and last names??? It drove me batty.

I'm going to try The Piper's Son, as well as Jellicoe Road because I've heard such praise for both. As of right now, though, Marchetta hasn't wowed me.
( )
  CreativeJunkie | Sep 23, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 60 (next | show all)
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For Luca
and
the St Mary's Cathedral College boys
... and for the girls there, too...
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This morning, my mother didn't get out of bed.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0375829830, Paperback)

Francesca is stuck at St. Sebastians, a boys' school that's pretends it's coed by giving the girls their own bathroom.  Her only female companions are an ultra-feminist, a rumored slut, and an an impossibly dorky accordion player.  The boys are no better, from Thomas who specializes in musical burping to Will, the perpetually frowning, smug moron that Francesca can't seem to stop thinking about.

Then there's Francesca's mother, who always thinks she knows what's best for Francesca—until she is suddenly stricken with acute depression, leaving Francesca lost, along, and without an inkling who she really is.  Simultaneously humorous, poignant, and impossible to put down, this is the story of a girl who must summon the strength to save her family, her social life and—hardest of all—herself.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:49:26 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Sixteen-year-old Francesca could use her outspoken mother's help with the problems of being one of a handful of girls at a parochial school that has just turned co-ed, but her mother has suddenly become severely depressed.

» see all 5 descriptions

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