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Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Saving Francesca by Melina Marchetta

Publication Date: March 31st 2003
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
My Goodreads Rating: 3/5
Source: Own Copy

Francesca has recently shifted to St. Sebastian's, a formerly all-boys school. The school has recently made the shift to co-ed, but students frequently forget that the girls are a part of the school.

She surrounds herself with girls, but finds friends only in a dorky musician, passionate activist and rumored slut. She can't find any boy she'd rather hang out with. The burping and farting masters are disgusting and the serious prefects are way too self-absorbed.

Just when Francesca needs her the most, her uber-confident mom is diagnosed with acute depression. Her family doesn't want to talk about it, her dad pins everything on her and her younger brother is sent away to live with their grandparents.

The story is written in a light tone, implying that it was indeed a teenager who wrote this story. From Francesca's point of view, the world seems to be turning upside down! It compels the reader to feel emotions of love, anger and curiosity along with Francesca, something that doesn't often happen in these kinds of books.

As Francesca explores the wide path she could pave for herself without her family watching, she also realizes that she still doesn't fit in at her new school. She begins to fall for a prefect without understanding it, cry over her mom who doesn't reciprocate her love and attempts to protect her younger brother from the inactivity of her family.

She grows up much faster than anyone would like her to- and in the span of a few months she becomes and in the span of a few months she becomes more effective than her father at caring for her mother. Yet Francesca is only a child- she can't be trusted with the family secrets.

I'd recommend this book as a travel read. It's definitely a book you can fly through on a train or a plane, while still fully comprehending the sorrows of the writing. 


  1. I read this one many years ago, so can't quite remember how I felt about it. I also gave it three stars, so I suspect our feelings regarding it are similar. Have you read her novel Jellicoe Road? It's a really good one that I think you'd enjoy more than this one. She also has an awesome fantasy series that I still need to finish, but the first book was so good. I'm always impressed by authors who can write multiple genres well. Enjoyed your review!

    1. I actually haven't read Jellicoe Road. Thanks so much for the recommendation Alicia! I am also really impressed by authors who can switch between genres, especially fiction and fantasy!

  2. I don't think I'd ever heard of this one. Sounds like a good read. Thanks for sharing it, and great review!


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