Ivy

Ivy

by Julie Hearn
4.0 14

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Ivy 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Ivy's life isn't exactly picturesque. At a very young age, she is orphaned and forced to live with her aunt, uncle, and cousins, who really can't afford to support another child. Once old enough, she is sent to school, but doesn't even last the whole day. While running from school her beautiful red hair makes Carroty Kate, a thief who literally steals the clothes off of people's backs, catch sight of her and snatch her up.

Forced into becoming a con artist, Ivy is brought into a clan of thieves where every night she is given laudanum in order to suppress the terrible nightmares she faces. Years later she escapes, fleeing back to her aunt and uncle's house. Everyday she works in order to provide for her still-struggling family, while also fighting her addiction to laudanum.

Then one day a young painter, who instantly decides that he must have her as a muse, glimpses her. Ivy and family reluctantly agree, as the money is good, and it could have its benefits. Ivy soon realizes, though, that modeling isn't what she imagined as she deals with a jealous mother, a familiar band of thieves, a persistent addiction, and a way too controlling cousin.

IVY is a great historical novel. There is so much to learn from this brilliantly written story that it was hard to see it end. Not only are there historical facts, but also some life lessons that still apply in modern times.

Ivy was by far one of the more interesting characters that I've ever read about. She has many quirks and led a terrible life. It was great to see a fully-developed character whose personality, however weird it may be, shone throughout the story. I really liked how Ivy was so mature for most of the story, but still had a childlike aspect to her when the reader found out how much of a passion she had for animals. She was so excited by the fact of getting to work with dogs that at one point in the story it almost seemed like she had transformed herself into a girl who hadn't had any hardships.

I also really liked how Ivy learned that modeling wasn't the best thing. Even though the story is set in Victorian England, Ivy still faces the problem of dealing with jealousy and not being good enough, which is something I'm sure many people in this day and age can relate to, as well. She also shows people how much trouble an addiction can cause, and also how hard it is to break it.

Overall, Julie Hearn did a great job recreating a very real Victorian England. Fans of historical fiction will absolutely devour this book. I am very much looking forward to reading more of Ms. Hearn's work and will definitely recommend this book to many.
I_Love_Reading20 More than 1 year ago
When I picked this book up I thought that it would be very different from how it ended up. To start the main character is very hard to understand. She starts out as a child, in the novel, and she seems sweet, but we never really find out who she is, or what she is about. Then we jump to the present, and she is addicted to drugs, which is kind of strange because she can just stop and start at any time (unlike a real addict). I never fully understood Ivy, which made the book unsatisfying. Also the end was haphazardly sewn together, and made no logical sense. However, this was an easy read, so if you have only a few days to make a deadline for a book report or something this is an okay book for that.
Rachel Stohlman More than 1 year ago
it was verry intertesting!!!!!!
Awesomeness1 More than 1 year ago
Ivy's life is far from picturesque. Orphaned at a young age, she moves in with her in-laws, a poor family of scoundrels. At the age of five, she runs away and finds herself an addition to a troupe of thieves, in particular, the "skinner" Carroty Kate. In order to silence Ivy's screams in the middle of the night caused by nightmares, Kate starts giving Ivy laudanum, one drop at time. Eleven years later Ivy is back home with her family, when her bright red hair and pale beauty catches the eye of a pre-Raphaelite painter, who wants her as his muse and model. Ivy is forced into an arrangement with the artist, Oscar Aretino Frosdick, by her bullying Cousin Jared and her "invalid" aunt, who desperately want the money. But not everyone is happy with this, including Ivy who escapes through her addiction and Frosdick's jealous mother. Ivy must now decide what she wants from her life, only made more difficult when her past comes back to haunt her. I really enjoyed this book. I love books set in London, particularly the Victorian-era, so this book definitely was a treat. I loved how this book was romantic, but not in the traditional "girl-loves-boy" kind of way. The intentionally anachronistic writing oozed charm and humor, and the chapter headings were great. An example is "Chapter Twenty-five: In Which Oscar's Physical Well-Being Is Once Again at Risk." The plot was very Dickensian, and I couldn't help comparing it to Oliver Twist in my mind. The characters were quirky, and Ivy was a good protagonist. She had flaws and strengths. I liked how despite everything she has been through, she still maintained a childlike fascination with animals. I do recommend this book and it's beautiful cover art. I went in expecting some typical rags-to-riches romance, but was pleasantly surprised.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
Although this book was enjoyable at some points, I found it confusing and rather hard to follow. Although the main character(Ivy) seems to have a good ending, we never find out about most of the other characters and the entire book seems to have no point. I would reccomend this book if you have nothing else to do, but frankly I thought it was a waste of time.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ivy has never had a good life. When she was young, her father died and her mother abandoned her. Her aunt and uncle that took her in weren't too kind either, and she was constantly mocked by her female cousins and beat by her cousin Jared. She's humiliated and punished when sent to school, so she runs away, only to join a band of thieves who start her laudanum addiction. As she grows older though, her fiery locks catch the eye of an artist, and she becomes his model. Yet problems persist in the form of a jealous mother, a familiar band of thieves, a controlling cousin, a drug addiction, and a realization that modeling can be a painful experience. Ivy was an enjoyable historical novel even though the story had it peculiarities. For example, Ivy had an aversion to eating meat, which is never completely explained but probably has something to do with her love for all animals. The motives of several characters were often befuddled and unclear, and Ivy was the only well-developed character, although I didn't like how she was always at the mercy of others and rarely made decisions for herself. Despite its drawbacks, Ivy's journey from thievery to a respectable occupation was fascinating in the context of nineteenth-century British society. It was the historical angle and thievery that drew me in, and I'm glad I read this novel. Ivy was a sort of combination between Elizabeth Scott's Stealing Heaven with the thievery aspect, Anna Godbersen's The Luxe with high society and fashion, Jennifer Donnelly's A Northern Light in respect to the role of women, and Christine Fletcher's Ten Cents a Dance in regard to addictions, the last three also being historical novels. I do recommend this novel to fans of historical fiction, but want against some confusion that may occur while reading this novel.