Friday, April 1, 2011

Review: The Vespertine

Title: The Vespertine
Author:  Saundra Mitchell
Publisher: Harcourt Children's Books
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It’s the summer of 1889, and Amelia van den Broek is new to Baltimore and eager to take in all the pleasures the city has to offer. But her gaiety is interrupted by disturbing, dreamlike visions she has only at sunset—visions that offer glimpses of the future.
Soon, friends and strangers alike call on Amelia to hear her prophecies. However, a forbidden romance with Nathaniel, an artist, threatens the new life Amelia is building in Baltimore. This enigmatic young man is keeping secrets of his own—still, Amelia finds herself irrepressibly drawn to him.
When one of her darkest visions comes to pass, Amelia’s world is thrown into chaos. And those around her begin to wonder if she’s not the seer of dark portents, but the cause.

My Review:

The Vespertine is written so eloquently! An example (and one of my favorite parts of the book):
"Clasping the balcony rail, I lifted my face to the wind again. It carried the cold, stony scent of fresh water. All my life, the ocean had surrounded me, saltily pushing me to the west. This spring's sweetness offered to carry me away, off to cold, clear lands that I had yet begun to imagine. Eyes closed, I pressed forward a bit more, parting my lips to catch a taste of that promise."
 Just lovely. I was hooked on her writing from the very first sentence.

One of my favorite parts about this story was all of the Victorian era details - the parties, the courting rituals, and the dresses. Most of all the dresses! I don't know how an author can manage to write about dresses so well that you want to dress up in one yourself, but Mitchell has managed to do just that!

I really enjoyed the storyline, and it went a bit deeper than I was first expecting. Amelia doesn't exactly conform to society's expectations, but things are going well for her. Then, all of a sudden things become chaotic. The last few chapters had me so tense waiting to see what would happen!

I really like the love connection in this story. I do wish that there would have been more details exchanged between them and more of a build up, but I liked their story nonetheless.

I do have to add that I love the cover of this book. It's so pretty! It's one of the things that first drew me in.

I want more! I want more of Mitchell's writing, more Victorian details, and more Amelia! I am sad that there will be no more novels written from Amelia's point of view, but I'm glad that there will be a companion novel. I will be waiting impatiently for it!

Overall, I really enjoyed this story and would definitely recommend The Vespertine!

I received this e-book in trade for an honest review


  1. Great review! The descriptions in the book seem really well-written. I'm adding it to my tbr list :)

  2. i've seen mixed reviews of this, so i'm really glad to hear that you liked it!

  3. I've read mixed reviews of this book too and I'm glad you liked it. The Victorian era is what drew me in in the first place. So I should get to reading it ASAP, it's already on my TBR list. ;)


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