Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Saving Francesca

Saving Francesca

Fall 2004 Fiction
Ages: 12 - 18 yrs.
Author: Melina Marchetta
ISBN: 0-375-82982-2
Hardcover Price: $15.95
This morning my mother didn’t get out of bed.” Francesca informs the reader in the opening sentence of Melina Marchetta’s eagerly awaited second novel. Here begins the affecting hilarious, heart wrenching, exciting tale of a family whose characters are so real the reader begins to see them, hear them, and almost feel with them.

The mother, when well, is dynamic, holding them up and together. There is laughter in the house, color, sometimes a spell of tears, and always, always certainty.

Now, though the mother is in bed in the next room, every person in the family is alone. Each feels helpless. For Francesca, in a mostly boys’ school - - there are only thirty girls at St. Sebastian’s - - she is, as she sees it, by herself. However, womanfully, she refuses to give into teenage angst. Francesca is an admirable character the reader will find hard not to admire, even hard not to love, and for this reader, impossible to forget.

Diana Huss Green   ©2004 Parents' Choice

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