Jellicoe Road, by Melina Marchetta

Reviewed by Paige, age 16, Pennsylvania

Jellicoe Road, by Melina Marchetta, tells the story of Taylor Markham, who at age eleven is abandoned by her mother. At fourteen, Taylor runs away from boarding school, soon to be tracked down and brought back the way she came. Now seventeen years old, she's the reluctant leader of her school's underground community, whose annual territory war with the Townies and visiting Cadets has just begun. The Cadets are led by the fearless Jonah Griggs, and Taylor can't steer away from his stare much longer. On top of that, Hannah, the one adult Taylor can count on, has disappeared. If Taylor can solve the mystery that Hannah left behind, the truth she uncovers might not just reveal her confusing past, but even change her future.

There are many things to love about Jellicoe Road, but here are a few main ones. I loved the whole mystery of the story, and how readers have to sort of figure things out for themselves. The two absorbing, captivating, and lyrical stories put together into one draw the reader in and create suspense and secrecy. The main character, Taylor, was also very realistic, and I loved her voice, personality, and back story. You easily fall in love with the romance that takes place in Jellicoe Road; it was just the right amount to keep the reader satisfied. This is one of those novels where, after you finish it, you sit there stunned and in awe.

The only complaint I have about Jellicoe Road is how confusing it was at first. It almost got to a point where I was reluctant to read it for the first 200 pages, then after that everything started to fall into place and make sense.

Jellicoe Road also had me questioning if it was very believable. I don't think boarding schools really have territory wars, but who knows? Taylor, however, was a very real main character and her past made this story more believable. Everyone had their own story to share, so I thought it was great. None of the characters were average or static; they could very easily be real people with their own problems like us.

Melina Marchetta also has a beautiful, flowing writing style that keeps you mesmerized the whole way through. She is a genius.

All you lovers of YA Contemporary, go read this book! I don't know why I put off reading it so long, but I am so glad I finally did. Like I said above, Jellicoe Road will leave you in shock and tug at the strings of your heart. You'll find yourself rooting for the characters and dying to find out the mystery along with them. I definitely recommend it to everyone.

I give Jellicoe Road 5 out of 5 stars! It is a must-read!

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February & March Magazine Issues

March 15, 2012

The February and March issues of Sweet Designs Magazine are now online, featuring a combined 53 new articles and features!!

- Cover: Stephanie Lynn reflects on 5 years
- Cover: India (of Darn-licious knitwear)
- Life in the dumps (moving in with my bf)
- The difference between men and women
- Angels among us (parts 1 and 2)
- Arts graduates & the dark night of the soul
- Triple threat (how I survived my teen yrs)
- Dating isn't easy (my true story)
- How to turn not-so-great gifts ... (fashion)
- Ten reasons to love being single
- Taking the big leap (college)
- Valentine's Day (not what you'd expect!)
- The last of the cold (hopefully) (fashion)
- A month full of love
- Ten tips for successful airline travel
- Reasons I love writing for SDM
- Who needs love?
- They're not all the same
- The life I'm glad I don't have (fiction)
- Professional dress/ finding Fendi (fashion)
- An airport anniversary: a true story
- Inappropriate Facebook photos
- The perks of a big city (college)
- A night(mare) to forget (part 2)
- The Anita Blake series (book review)
- Saving June by Hannah Harrington (book)
- Under the Mesquite by GG McCall (book)
- The Lullaby by Sarah Dessen (book)
- If I Stay by Gayle Foreman (book review)
- My sweetheart (original poetry)
- Isn't it funny (original poetry)
- The stranger (original poetry)
- A winter wonderland (original poetry)
- One night valentine
- The thick envelopes (college acceptance)
- Southern love
- Healthy hair and vitamins
- It's a date (dating idea alternatives)
- The 30 hour famine
- School's out forever!
- Marching right back into spring? (fashion)
- Dear John
- When TV shows depict your life
- 3 Fun ways to rock spring's hottest trends
- Neglected teeth
- Starting something new
- Guy movies
- To hesitate or dive in?
- Deadly, by Julie Chibbaro (book review)
- Beastly, by Alex Flinn (book review)
- I don't care (poetry)
- Together, alone (poetry)

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