50 Books by Authors of Color: Book 32
Title: All These Things I’ve Done
Author: Gabrielle Zevin
Anya Balanchine is a sixteen-year-old orphan with too much responsibility. While legally she and her brother Leo and her sister Nattie are under the care of their Grandmother, the truth is Anya is the one running the family. Leo, while older suffered from a head injury as a child and never mentally grew up. Anya handles everything from dealing with the family’s finances while living in a world of water rationing, to getting herself and her sister out to school and dealing with the family’s legal troubles.
Anya has everything under control until two very distinct things happen which throw her life and her family’s life into turbulent (rationed) waters: She meets Win, the son of the Assistant District Attorney and she is accused of poisoning her ex-boyfriend Gable with chocolate, which has now become illegal.
This book was a roller coaster of emotions and action. Anya is also dealing with the fact that her family, the Balanchine’s is a notorious crime family. They deal in the now highly illegal chocolate, while Anya and her immediate family are not currently involved, her father was the family head before his death. Which of course, slates the media against her after Gable’s poisoning.
I’ve heard people compare Twilight to Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet which I think is laughable, but Zevin actually manages to create a semi-modern situation where Anya and Win are actually star-crossed lovers, her the daughter of a Mafioso Crime Boss, him the son of a District Attorney. While I don’t think Zevin will be as well remembered as Shakespare, I do think All These Things I’ve Done is a modern book worth reading.
Overall Rating: 3/5 and I can’t wait to read the next one.