Jellicoe Road by Melina MarchettaJellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta

Jellicoe Road

byMelina Marchetta

Paperback | March 9, 2010

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Winner of the Michael L. Printz Award * ALA Best Book for Young Adults * Kirkus Best Book

Jellicoe Road is a dazzling tale that is part love story, part family drama, and part coming-of-age novel. Described by Kirkus Reviews as “a beautifully rendered mystery” and by VOYA as “a great choice for more sophisticated readers and those teens who like multifaceted stories and characters.”

Abandoned by her mother on Jellicoe Road when she was eleven, Taylor Markham, now seventeen, is finally being confronted with her past. But as the reluctant leader of her boarding school dorm, there isn't a lot of time for introspection. And while Hannah, the closest adult Taylor has to family, has disappeared, Jonah Griggs, the boy who might be the key to unlocking the secrets for Taylor’s past, is back in town, moody stares and all.

In this absorbing story by Melina Marchetta, nothing is as it seems and every clue leads to more questions as Taylor tries to work out the connection between her mother dumping her; Hannah finding her; Hannah’s sudden departure; a mysterious stranger who once whispered something in her ear; a boy in her dreams; five kids who lived on Jellicoe Road eighteen years ago; and the maddening and magnetic Jonah Griggs, who knows her better than she thinks he does.

If Taylor can put together the pieces of her past, she just might be able to change her future.

Melina Marchetta lives in Sydney. She is also the author of the award-winning novelsSaving Francesca,Looking For Alibrandi, andFinnikin of the Rock.Looking For Alibrandiwas released as a major Australian film.
Title:Jellicoe RoadFormat:PaperbackDimensions:432 pages, 8 × 5.31 × 0.97 inPublished:March 9, 2010Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0061431850

ISBN - 13:9780061431852

Appropriate for ages: 9 - 12


Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of my favourite books of all time The way Marchetta develops characters, and their relationships with eachother, is something to watch. A must read.
Date published: 2018-04-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from marchetta is queen umm this book will probably destroy you (in all the best ways) & keep you wanting more!! i don't know how marchetta does it but she creates the most incredible characters who surprise you and make your heart ache for them. every single one of these characters are so developed and no one feels useless to the story such a beautiful novel about family & friendships. the book is so interesting!! nothing but love for this author & her way with words
Date published: 2018-03-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOVE this book deserves all the praise!
Date published: 2018-01-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of my favourites! I've read this book again and again and again and again....and will continue to read it for many many years to come. A great story about the adventures and struggles of a hilarious group of teenagers. So far, my favourite book ever!
Date published: 2017-12-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Worth All the Praises I've Heard After wanting to read this book for the longest time I finally did it. I picked it up and read it. I can see why it is so well-loved. Jellicoe Road is a moving story full of heartache and hope. I'm going to keep this review short because I think it's better to go into the story knowing as little as possible. You're guaranteed to be confused but trust me when I say it's better that way. The mysterious air made the characters much memorable and the story more profound. As I mentioned earlier, at the beginning of the story, I was very confused. Nevertheless I found myself completely engrossed in piecing together the stories. There was so much love but also great losses. The closer we got to the big picture, the more anxious and dread I felt. The way the story flowed made it so you know the undeniable truths but you really don't want the reality to be confirmed. Ms. Marchetta skillfully ties everything in. You don't know you needed the little details until they're given to you. The story of Jellicoe Road is thoughtful and quietly intense. There were many different types of relationships and they were all very sweet. Each subtle on the surface but overflowing with feelings at its center. "Maybe that's why humans find it so hard getting over love affairs. It's not the pain they're getting over, it's the love." (p. 262). The territory war was my favourite. I love a good rivalry and seeing the boarders, Townies and Cadets in action was such good fun. They meant business but not so serious that they couldn't be friends and have some laughs together. Even if no one knew how it all started, it was a meaningful game. A book rich in emotions with excellent characterization, Jellicoe Road is a must-read for readers of all genre and all age. I cannot recommend this book enough. Read it.
Date published: 2017-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from All Time Favourite Book - Absorbing & Moving I have re-read this book over a dozen times! AMAZING! Such an intricate story that just swallows you up into the word and the characters and how they bond, interact and come together is just amazing! At first it is confusing but when the story comes together, it is just mind-blowing. So touching too, I recommend any book by Melina Marchetta! Another master piece to add to her list.
Date published: 2017-02-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Glad I read it :) I feel somewhat obligated (or maybe just amused to the point where I feel it needs to be told) to point out the fact that what led me to the discovery of this book was a quote I kept seeing around the Internet. <b><i>"If you weren't driving, I'd kiss you senseless," I tell him. He swerves to the side of the road and stops the car abruptly. "Not driving any more."</i></b> Now, I didn't allow myself to have high expectations for said book considering my interest stemmed from one quote that intrigued me BUT this book was beyond any expectations. The writing flowed lyrically, beautifully, emotionally. And the mystery and suspense were like bread crumbs left on a trail as you read to keep you wanting more. This story had all the aspects of a wonderful, riveting, emotional journey and was also relievingly humorous in some parts. I can't fully put into enough words how wonderful this story was.. It was just emotional and beautiful and so tragic a journey for me.
Date published: 2017-01-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An all-time favourite The beginning is super confusing but all the complicated parts from the first hundred or so pages start to come together later on in the book and you will be so happy you powered through the confusing parts because it gets so good! This book is a crazy mix of drama/thriller/mystery/lovestory/coming of age that will seriously leave you blown away by the end. Highly highly highly recommend!!
Date published: 2016-11-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A little confusing at first but then so good! Taylor is leader of the boarders at the Jellicoe School. She has to keep the upper hand in the territory wars and deal with Jonah Griggs—the enigmatic leader of the cadets, and someone she thought she would never see again. And now Hannah, the person Taylor had come to rely on, has disappeared. Taylor’s only clue is a manuscript about five kids who lived in Jellicoe eighteen years ago. She needs to find out more, but this means confronting her own story, making sense of her strange, recurring dream, and finding her mother—who abandoned her on the Jellicoe Road. So many people have been telling me that I have to read this book and now I finally have. I wasn’t sure what to expect going in since I’ve seen such praise for it and I didn’t want to be let down. It ended up being an entertaining read and I really liked the characters, but I wasn’t as absorbed into the territory wars as I would have liked to have been. Taylor, newly appointed leader of the kids who attend Jellicoe school, was the main character and one that was both intriguing and frustrating. She was going through a lot and trying to deal with it on her own, which led her to passing her responsibilities as leader off on other people. It left a lot of room for growth and she did obviously care about the school and the kids under her care. At first, the plot was a little confusing. It took a few chapters to fully understand who was who and what was going on. Once that was dealt with, it made reading a lot easier. There was a lot of discussion about the territory wars, which was Taylor’s boarders vs the townies vs the cadets and each group ‘owned’ part of the land. There were ways to get more land, to lose land, etc but it never felt like a huge plot detail to me, even though there was a lot about it in the book. What I was more excited about was to find out what had happened to Taylor’s guardian, Hannah, who’d disappeared and why the story of five kids from eighteen years old was so important. It did take a few chapters to get used to the switching between the story of those kids and Taylor’s group but once I did, it worked really well. The more that was revealed in the story, the more it connected to the present. The writing was absolutely beautiful. There were so many quotable passages. The interactions between characters were all over the place, in a good way. There was fighting and laughter and misery and support and love. It was great and they were my favourite part of the book.
Date published: 2015-10-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good! As I first started reading, I thought the book was confusing because of the 2 stories. But keep on reading because it will all make sense. I love books where all the little, what-may-seem-insignificant things add up to together in the end to shock you. The book did just that.
Date published: 2015-01-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An absorbing story Please, do yourself a favor and read this book.
Date published: 2014-06-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A moving read Complex and rich. Working on many levels and very satisfying. You won't regret reading Jellicoe Road.
Date published: 2013-02-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Meaningful, Overwhelming and Inspirational Story Originally posted at Reviewing Jellicoe Road is probably the hardest thing I have done since I started my blog...This book left me speechless. What do you want me to say? What could I possible say? Jellicoe Road was so overpowering and magnificent that left me with no words. Seriously, I have never read a contemporary book so, so good! Melina Marchetta is beyond my understanding. First, I idolized her for the only book I read of hers, Finnikin of the Rock. Now, she absolutely left me speechless. Jellicoe Road is something else, something indescribable, something capable to marvel any reader around the world. It doesn't matter the genres you prefer nor your age or your cultural background because Jellicoe Road is capable to reach the most inner core of human being, the soul. How can so much sadness and love belong -long to be- to the same place? I wonder... how is that possible? in this book it is. Two stories masterfully intertwine on the Jellicoe Road, linking the past and the present, the characters and their stories. This book is a Road full of enriching, humane and soul-touching life experiences about self-discovery, belonging, understanding and forgiveness. This book is certainly a Road you'll want to walk by yourself and absorb everything it has to offer. I am so ashamed to say that I waited so long to read this book, but I am also proud to say that now I have this book on my shelf. I knew Jellicoe Road would amaze me, Finnikin of the Rock which is also by Melina Marchetta, highly did and I was ready to read something absolutely great in this book. However, what I did not expect was that Jellicoe Road would touch every single cell of my body with such strength that even my soul was overpowered. The intensity of this book will absorb readers's souls and wont let them go until they shed the last tear. After that, it will be the readers that wont let go of this book. Melina Marchetta must be a writer sent by God or something, because I doubt I'll ever read something like this ever again. For me, she excels among any YA writer and Jellicoe Road is the physical proof of it. The lyrical and emotionally evocative writing style will steal your breathe countless of times. The characters, the plot and the countless themes in this story, makes this book a must-read and a must-have. I don't know what else I can say to express how I feel about this book. How can I let readers know that they should pick Jellicoe Road and read it not only once but twice, and then a third time and a fourth... Seriously, this is a book to re-read. I certainly want to walk over and over again on the Jellicoe Road. Jellicoe Road is a story that has certainly engraved itself into readers' heart and memory and it will certainly engrave its own mark through history as well. Now, if you haven't read this book yet, go and get it as soon as you can and turn to the first page... That is your first step to walk "the prettiest road I'd ever seen" Go and walk for yourself this inspirational, meaningful, overwhelming and enlightening story on the Jellicoe Road.
Date published: 2011-12-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Epic Review First Published at There are so many reviews floating around about Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta. People talk about it, saying it's the best book they have ever read and so on. Even with the all the raving reviews I wasn't convinced; I've been deceived before. Novels that people have gushed over and then I read them find that they are really terrible. So I wasn't overly eager to read this. I was at the library this past Saturday looking for I Am Number Four (which I did not find), when I saw Jellicoe Road and decided that I'd pick it up. It is not often that I regret not buying a book, usually I wish I would have just borrowed them from the library. However I really wish that I would have bought a copy of this book. This is one of the best books I have read in a very long time, and I have read some really good books. But there is something special about Jellicoe Road. Although while you are reading it, there is no way to tell what is so amazing about it. Even now trying to think about it, and express it, I am having a hard time. Marchetta writes a truly amazing story about love and friendship. A story about trust and truth. It's magical. She has this amazing mix of humour and heartbreak. She has a perfect blend of fun and fights. There are three communities that have mini turf wars, but I really loved how when it really mattered they were able to put aside their differences and come together. Her writing is beautiful. There is a story within a story and in some cases this is annoying as you would much rather being reading about the other story. However the second story is very much a part of the initial story. It's a very smooth transition. The characters, I think, are what make this story. They are unbelievable. They work so well with each other. Taylor the female protagonist is a fantastic character. She is strong and independent, but she's afraid to give herself. She has not had the easiest life, and she has ample reason to not trust people. There are so many great characters and I can't talk about them all of them, but you cannot talk about Jellicoe Road with out mentioning Jonah Griggs. He is so cool. He's absolutely perfect for Taylor. I was reading a post the other day about which YA characters you'd most want to date, and Griggs made the list and my reaction was, no way man he belongs to Taylor- I felt silly for thinking that the moment I thought it, but you get what I mean- He is truly an amazing character. I don't have a single bad thing to say about this book. Nothing bugged me or made me roll my eyes, I laughed, I cried. It made me feel sad sometimes, but it added to it's greatness. I don't know. Read it. All of you. You will not be sorry.
Date published: 2011-03-27

Editorial Reviews

“Melina Marchetta has a knack for writing stories that swallow you up and refuse to let you go until you’ve read every last word....Marchetta is a master at creating intriguing characters and her stories are heartfelt.”—