REVIEW: The Red Necklace (French Revolution #1) by Sally Gardner

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars, Genre: Historical Fiction/ Young Adult, Pages: 376, Level: Easy

Book Description:

“The winds of change are blowing through Paris in the winter of 1789, both for France and for our hero, a striking and mysterious Gypsy boy named Yann Margoza. He was born with a gift for knowing what people are thinking and an uncanny ability to throw his voice, and he has been using those skills while working for a rather foolish magician. That work will soon end, however, and on the night of the magician’s final performance, Yann’s life will truly begin. That’s the night he meets shy Sido, an heiress with a cold-hearted father, a young girl who has only known loneliness until now. Though they have the shortest of conversations, an attachment is born that will influence both their paths.

And what paths those will be! While Revolution is afoot in France, Sido is being used as the pawn of a fearful villain who goes by the name Count Kalliovski. Some have instead called him the devil, and only Yann, for Sido’s sake, will dare to oppose him.”

The Red Necklace is a Young Adult, historical fiction book about the French Revolution with a little Gypsy magic worked into it. Yann is a young man with special talents who works for a magician at a theater. Circumstances lead him to meet Sido, a young lady and part of the upper class who will soon become the victim of the Revolution. Yann immediately recognizes how special Sido is and tries to save her from the guillotine or marriage to the evil Count Kalliovski who is after her inheritance.

This is a moderate love story. While the politics of the time are addressed and events of the French Revolution portrayed, it mostly portrays the lives and mysteries of Yann and Sido. It is written well and captured my interest immediately. There is not a lot to say about The Red Necklace; it is simply an interesting and quick read. If you enjoy historical fiction, I think you will enjoy this book. This would also be a good book to suggest to a young adult if he or she is attempting to break into the historical fiction genre.

Reviewed by Christina

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