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Source: ARC from Raincoast Books for review (thank you! <3)
Publisher: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
Format: Hardcover, 224 pages
Release Date: September 4, 2012
Mira is shocked when she receives a postcard from her missing mother from Paris. Her father decides it's time for a trip to France to search for her. While visiting Notre Dame, Mira touches a gargoyle and is whirled into the past. There she meets the famous painter Degas and catches a brief, shocking glimpse of her mother. Mira begins to suspect that her mom didn't run out on them but is a prisoner of the past. Can one family on an incredible worldwide adventure stop a plot in time?If you're looking for an enjoyable MG with a little bit of everything -- time travel, culture, history, romance -- look no further! Mira's Diary is a fun and charming trip to Paris that you'll be able to race through in no time.
What starts off for the main character Mira as a trip to Paris to find her mysteriously missing mother quickly turns into a whirlwind of an adventure as she tries to shape the future and hide her identity. I can't say that I was familiar with most of the history and information shared in the book about Degas and that entire scandal but it was interesting to read about. I did feel like the information came a little abruptly at times (I would have liked a bit more of a break between chunks of it) but overall, it was very cool to learn.
Mira herself was an interesting character. I appreciated for the most part what she tried to accomplish throughout the novel but I also wish that her character had been a little more well-developped. At the end of everything, I still don't think I have a good sense of who Mira is.
A part of this, I suspect, is the constant back-and-forth with the time travel. Now look, I get it. Time travel novels usually have lots of this and it's fine! For some reason though, it didn't 100% work all the time with this novel for me. The jumping around got a little confusing for me and I kept having to go back and compare the dates in the chapter titles (super helpful, those).
Overall, a cute MG with great pictures to improve the experience even more! Lots of fun.
Cover Comments: I saw this IRL at a bookstore when it first came out and it looks adorable! I love the diary style of it.
3 Golden Crowns!