book reviews · young adult

These Shallow Graves by Jennifer Donnelly

30267904Title: These Shallow Graves
Author: Jennifer Donnelly
Source: Bought
Pages: 487 pages
Category:Historical Fiction, YA, Mystery, Romance


New York Times bestseller from the acclaimed author of A Northern Light and Revolution.This thrilling mystery is perfect for fans of The Cellar and Suicide Notes from Beautiful Girls. It’s a story of dark secrets, dirty truths, and the lengths to which people will go for love and revenge.
Jo Montfort is beautiful and rich, and soon like all the girls in her class she ll graduate from finishing school and be married off to a wealthy bachelor. Which is the last thing she wants. Jo dreams of becoming a writer a newspaper reporter.
Wild aspirations aside, Jo s life seems perfect until tragedy strikes: her father is found dead. The story is that Charles Montfort shot himself while cleaning his revolver, but the more Jo hears about her father s death, the more something feels wrong. And then she meets Eddie a young, smart, infuriatingly handsome reporter at her father s newspaper and it becomes all too clear how much she stands to lose if she keeps searching for the truth. But now it might be too late to stop.
The past never stays buried forever. Life is dirtier than Jo Montfort could ever have imagined, and this time the truth is the dirtiest part of all.
Praise forThese Shallow Graves 

Action-packed chapters propel this compelling mystery [and] the injustices Donelly highlights remain all too relevant. Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
Lovely prose, historical intrigue, unique characters and setting.I devoured this book! Ruta Sepetys, New York Timesbestselling author ofBetween Shades of GrayandSalt to the Sea
A splendidly hair-raising tourof the brightest and darkest corners of Victorian New York. Elizabeth WeinNew York Timesbestselling author ofCode Name VerityandBlack Dove, White Raven
A fast-paced Gilded Age crime thriller. Julie Berry, award-winning author ofAll the Truth That s in Me

LIKENESS SCALE:❤❤❤❤ (4.5 hearts rating)


The setting of this book happened in the 1980’s. Josephine Montfort or Jo for short was a very strong heroine. She had a mind of her own, however, society did not approve of her inquisitive mind. By writing and snooping around she was able to quench her thirst for knowledge. The death of her father and others was the catalyst she needed to hone her talents as a journalist. She was accompanied by Eddie Gallagher, a young journalist who she met in her families newspaper business. Both decided to team up and solve the mystery of the death of Jo’s father. Both had ulterior motives with the alliance, Jo would find justice for her father while Eddie would have his scoop. Even if both characters decided that it would be a partnership of convenience, it was evident that they were both falling in love with each other. Due to society, it was a very awkward and difficult situation for both character. But because of their curiosity they were able to work together as a team. In the end, Jo was able to do the right thing for her family which resulted to her freedom from society’s expectations.

I love Jo as a character. She was so flawed inside, but perfect outside. Society and environment was a factor that hindered her potential for growth. However, at the expense her family’s lavish lifestyle, she was able to have her personal freedom. I gave this story a 4.5 hearts rating because the reading experience was a good one. I love the characters and the story plot. The 1980’s was a time which still had arrange marriages and  ladies weren’t free to think for themselves. I now value my freedom more after reading this novel. It was such a very enlightening read that it made me more thankful for the freedom which I have now.


“That was what people did when they wanted to stop a girl from doing something—they shamed her.”
― Jennifer Donnelly, These Shallow Graves

“We who have means and a voice must use them to help those who have neither. Yet how can we help them if we don’t even know about them? And how can we know about them if no one writes about them? Is it so wrong to want to know things?”
― Jennifer Donnelly, These Shallow Graves

“Sir, no amount of money, no matter how vast, could induce me to stroll, perambulate, promenade, or engage in any form of locomotion with you whatsoever. Good evening.”
― Jennifer Donnelly, These Shallow Graves

“Headstrong is just a word, Katie – a word others call you when you don’t do what they want.”
― Jennifer Donnelly, These Shallow Graves

“I’d wish you good luck, but you won’t need it. You get to write your own story now. Nothing’s luckier than that.”
― Jennifer Donnelly, These Shallow Graves

“But you are a different sort of girl. Not at all what I expected you to be. And this is a different sort of time. And so I am hopeful for all the things you may yet find.”
― Jennifer Donnelly, These Shallow Graves

“The truth can be a hard thing, Jo. It’s often best left hidden.”
― Jennifer Donnelly, These Shallow Graves



5 thoughts on “These Shallow Graves by Jennifer Donnelly

      1. yes, please do read it, it’s a well written historical fiction and you could not help but love the characters despite the awful situation they are in. Also, Salt to the Sea is one of my favourite reads last 2016..

        Liked by 1 person

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