Saturday, February 19, 2011

Review: A Time of Miracles - Anne-Laure Bondoux

Where I got it: Library
Rating:  4 stars
Cover Rating: 4 stars (I really like it, the colors and the blur of the background. I also appreciate the relevance to the story portrayed in the photograph. The only bad thing is that it looks like an adult cover, but maybe YA will start to look more like this.)
Genre: Young Adult
Publication Date: November 9, 2010
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Page Count: 180 p.

There was a woman picking peaches in her father's orchard when a train derailed. This woman, Gloria, heard a woman's cries coming from inside a train. The women was French and told Gloria to take her baby Blaise Fortune and gave Gloria their passports. Gloria has raised Blaise as her own, and has given him a proper name of Koumaïl. When Koumaïl turns seven the Caucasus becomes a war filled place and Gloria decides they must flee west to Europe. The traveling spans across five years, with stays here and there. The whole time Koumaïl asks Gloria to repeat the story of how he came to be with her, as if her words would help him figure out who he is.

This was a very fascinating read. Historical Fiction that pulls at your heartstrings. Koumaïl is a young boy and when him and Gloria must flee he has to leave many things behind. As soon as he gets comfortable in one place they must again move on as the war follows at their heels. I really enjoyed following their journey across the continent. Koumaïl was a very interesting character and it was fascinating to hear his account of the trip that he had to make. Seeing everything from a child's point of view makes the whole situation look a whole lot different than if an adult was telling it. A child's perspective though not any lesser of an observation, is often times more naive, a young child simply doesn't know what is going on, often because the adults are trying to shield them from it. This is certainly the case in this novel. Koumaïl is much more worried about leaving his friends and hoping that Gloria is okay, than the war itself which they are fleeing. If you really enjoy a short Historical Fiction read make sure you check this one out, Anne-Laure Bondoux is quite a good author.

First Lines:
"My name is Blaise Fortune and I am a citizen of the French Republic. It's the pure and simple truth."

Favorite Line:
"Unfortunately, the best of times have to come to an end."


  1. I have a think for historical fiction, and I'm so glad to hear that this one resonates. Fabulous review! :)

  2. This sounds like a pretty powerful read, thanks for reviewing it.


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