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.
Okay, I don’t think I could handle it if chocolate were banned. I mean, seriously. The coffee I could do without (though I’m sure the hubs would be a joy to live with) but chocolate? No freaking way.
This book had such a unique premise that I was really hoping to fall hopelessly in love with it. But I didn’t. I didn’t hate it but I had an issue and for me it’s a big one. The pacing in All These Things I’ve Done? It was way, way off for me.
Okay, so, I LOVED the parts about her mafia family and the chocolate poisoning and such. But sandwiched in between was the romancey stuff. It just seemed like in the middle of the book there was a shift from the mystery of the poisoning to the smoochy part and then back to the mystery again. I found it jarring and quite noticeable. I would have much preferred if the mafia stuff stayed the main focus and the romance part was woven in better. It’s not that I didn’t like the romance stuff, it’s just that it kinda stopped everything else that was happening. And yes, I realize that when teens fall in love (or anyone for that matter) that pretty much everything else is at a stand-still for a while. I just found it jarring, is all.
But still, I did enjoy the book and really loved the prohibition throwback and the tone of the book. Even though it made me crave chocolate like nobody’s business.