Friday, November 4, 2011

Review: All These Things I've Done

Title: All These Things I've Done
Author: Gabrielle Zevin
Date Released: September 6th, 2011
Pages: 354
Rating: 4 out of 5

In 2083, chocolate and coffee are illegal, paper is hard to find, water is carefully rationed, and New York City is rife with crime and poverty. And yet, for Anya Balanchine, the sixteen-year-old daughter of the city's most notorious (and dead) crime boss, life is fairly routine. It consists of going to school, taking care of her siblings and her dying grandmother, trying to avoid falling in love with the new assistant D.A.'s son, and avoiding her loser ex-boyfriend. That is until her ex is accidently poisoned by the chocolate her family manufactures and the police think she's to blame. Suddenly, Anya finds herself thrust unwillingly into the spotlight--at school, in the news, and most importantly, within her mafia family.

Anya has to take care of her vulnerable little sister, slow older brother, and dying grandmother, as well as go to school, and trying to avoid falling in love with the assistant DA's son and her ex-boyfriend.  She lives in a dangerous world full of crime and poverty, and her life is fairly normal, until she gets caught up in what she had been trying to avoid, her mafia family, amongst other things.

All These Things I've Done was really fascinating.  I was really interested in it because of the whole "chocolate is illegal" thing because I LOVE chocolate.  So, when I heard about it, I was like, "No way!  How could anyone live without chocolate??"  That's when I decided to read it.  And it was really cool how even though chocolate is illegal in this world, Anya's family still manufactures chocolate.  However, chocolate quickly becomes the bad guy when people become horribly disfigured from poisoned chocolate that the Balanchine (Anya's family company) Company distrubtes.

I really liked all of the characters, especially Anya.  She had all those qualities that a person obviously needs to possess to live in this world, and she was sensible, despite the fact that sometimes she'll do something she's not supposed to do, just to get on someone's nerves, which made her funny.  I also really liked Win.  He was Anya's sort of on and off boyfriend, and was just like any other YA male love interest, which is a good thing, not a bad thing.  He seemed cute, with his endless hat wearing thing going on, and he was caring, especially of Anya.

The plot got pretty intense with the mystery of who poisoned the chocolate, Anya's forbidden relationship with Win, and struggling to take care of her family.  It was like a roller coaster ride of suspense!

Overall, I really liked All These Things I've Done!  It had a really interesting storyline with really cool characters.  It didn't end on a huge cliffhanger, but just enough to leave you wanting to figure out what's going to happen next.  I'd definitely recommend this, especially if you're look for a dystopian/contemporary type book.  I'll definitely be looking forward to the next book in this series!

All These Things I've Done (Birthright, #1)Cover Review:
This cover is okay.  It represents the book well in that it portrays what's going on in the book, with the chocolate shaped as a heart, and the numbered list is kind of like showing the "all these things I've done" part of the book, but it is a bit plain.  The different parts of the cover aren't very cohesive.  I actually rather liked the cover for what I think is the UK edition of the book (if it isn't, feel free to correct me).  That one is very cool because it seems a bit more modern.

Cleo :)

*Description and covers from


  1. No Chocolate! That's crazy talk! Sounds interesting, great review!

    Book Addict

  2. Ohhhh I actually haven't been all that interested in reading this book till I read your review. Chocolate being illegal? SUCH AN INTERESTING PREMISE! I'll definitely have to pick this one up sometime! :)


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