young adult book reviews & more

Sovay by Celia Rees

SovayYoung Sovay Middleton’s privileged life has been disappointingly lacking of adventure of late, so she does what any bold girl would to—she dons a man’s attire and poses as a highwayman. But what starts as a clever test of love soon turns deadly, especially after Sovay steals the wallet of one of the most powerful and dangerous men in all of England. But the information she also uncovers may be worth risking the law and her personal safety for—her father has been accused to treason. And now, with her family missing, it’s up to Sovay to set things right, but the odds are stacked up against her everywhere she goes. She is but a powerless woman in a male-dominated society, unsude of who she can trust because with the revolutionary fever catching from nearby France, London’s spy network reaches farther than ever. In this suspenseful and romantic historical novel comes an unforgettable tale of danger and love.

Obviously well researched and well referenced, historical drama Sovay takes readers back to the romantic era of Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities. The novel starts energetically and continues to pick up pace as mere adventure morphs into the real threat of death, keeping readers on the edge of their seat. I was so excited to be taken back to the turbulent times during the French Revolution, having enjoyed studying that period and reading one of the few classics I loved, A Tale of Two Cities; there was just so much mischief to be made during that time as Rees accurately portrayed. There is something so satisfying about reading a story in which all the pieces fit together so perfectly, as I felt happened in Sovay. Sovay’s character is so bold and independent in a Robin Hood-esque kind of way that readers are drawn to her spunky attitude and determination. There were some conflicting times when Sovay let her fear show through, but otherwise, I felt the character development to be sufficient, even if I wished some of the characters played larger roles than they did. Sovay’s tale of romance and suspense with a historical edge was a thrill to read.

Readers who enjoy the historical fiction and action genres will want to check out Sovay. Fans of A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray and most especially, A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens will also fall in love with this exciting tale.

Rating: 4.75

Review copy from publisher Bloomsbury USA

10 munch(es) :

Steph Su said...

While I loved Libba Bray, I didn't quite love Dickens as much, but from your review this book seems like something I would like, so I'm putting it on my Wishlist. Thanks!

Serena said...

this sounds like a great book...pickpocketing! fantastic...talk about events that can turn things upside down!

Amee said...

I'm glad to see a positive review for this. The only ones I have seen seem to be less than enthusiastic about it. Your review gives me hope about the book. ;)

Bookworm said...

Wow! I always thought it was modern-set. I'll definitely have to check it out, it looks great!

Becky said...

I'm glad to see a positive review of this too. I read it and enjoyed it a few months ago. But when I was searching for other reviews, they always came back negative. I thought I might have been alone :)

H said...

I hadn't seen any reviews for this yet. I think I might check it out

Anonymous said...

This is TOTALLY something I would read. Thanks for posting the review.

If you like light reading about the French Revolution, allow me to also recommend Mark Steel's _Vive La Revolution_. It's a history of the revolution written by a professional comedian who uses humor to play up the human drama of the story, and to comment on some of the weird ways academic historians choose to tell it. I flew through it and had a lot of fun.

Anonymous said...

I took your advice and read the book and I actually enjoyed it. I've never really been a fan for books that have this type of setting but to my surprise i found that I couldnt put it down.

Thanks for the good reviews!

Lynette said...

Just finished it ... it started out so promisingly, but then about halfway through it just because confusing. It didn't seem to have any real structure, just jumped from one thing to the next, and by the end it was almost like just reading a textbook. Characters that we knew intimately just kind of disappeared in the second half. Oh, we found out their fate, but it was so impersonal that I felt cheated. I was highly disappointed - I am a big fan of Celia Rees, and had looked forward to this book.

Anonymous said...

This is a great book! I had to read it for a historical fiction book report and I was finished with it in 5 days. I highly recommend it!

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