This was my mystery book that Malissa sent me. I was super excited to dive into it, despite not knowing *anything* about it. I didn't know the title, the author, the description; nothing. The anticipation was killing me.
It didn't take long for me to guess the title of the book I was reading, given how quickly and often the Jellicoe Road is mentioned, but I couldn't remember the description, so I still had that going for me. I didn't mind one bit, though. All it took was the first line:
"My father took one hundred and thirty-two minutes to die. I counted."
I was hooked.
Taylor had me from the beginning. I wanted desperately to know her story, and how it connected with Tate, Narnie, Webb, & Fitz. I wanted to know how she came to be at the Jellicoe School and where her family went. I wanted to know it all. I wanted to know it so badly, I could barely put it down.
The war between the Cadets, Townies, and the school amused me. Just how seriously they took it, I think, it was what got me the most. It seemed so trivial, something that could be a lot of fun, but there was such a seriousness to it, like it was meant to be equivalent to a real war. For me it was a fun aspect of the story that added a lot to each character.
And the characters. Melina Marchetta knows how to write some characters, that's for sure. Taylor was so stubborn, and trusted no one, really. I mean, why should she trust anyone? She was dumped by her mother. The closest thing to family she has is Hannah, and even that can be tenuous. And Jonah, with his hardened exterior due to so many judgements from others... how could I not adore him? I truly enjoyed watching the both of them grow as they come to realize and learn things about not only themselves but one another and what it means to love and truly be there for someone you care about.
Although this isn't a mystery book, there was definitely an air of mystery involved. I felt like I was putting together a puzzle the entire time I was reading, and I loved it.
I would definitely recommend this to nearly anyone. I immersed myself in it and feel I'm better for it.