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REVIEW: Rose Sees Red by Cecil Castellucci


Set in New York in the 1980s, this story of two ballet dancers (one American, one Russian) recounts the unforgettable night they spend in the city, and celebrates the friendship they form despite their cultural and political differences.

About the Author

Cecil Castellucci is an indie rocker, director, and the author of Boy Proof, Beige, The Queen of Cool, and the graphic novels The P.L.A.I.N. Janes and Janes in Love. She currently lives in Los Angeles, California.


  • Reading level: Young Adult
  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic Press; 1 edition (August 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0545060796
  • ISBN-13: 978-0545060790



This turned out to be one of my favorite books that I have read this year.  The words just rolled off the pages and into my brain.  I have had this book sitting around since last June and wasn't prompted to read it until I saw Cecil Castellucci read from her entry in Geektastic about how not to act in front of your favorite authors.  She sold me on her writing.  I have to admit the first line of the book was a little depressing and I wasn't inclined to give it a chance.  I didn't even give it the full 50 pages I normally give to all books.  Big Mistake!  Don't make my mistake.  Give this book your full attention and you will be happy you did.  You also won't be able to put it down once you start it.

Even though the story is set in 80's, it feels modern and up to date.  Yes, there is some alcohol and a hint of sex, but much less than anything you would see on television.  Rose is "every teen", as she is insecure, a bit depressed and searching for herself.  She makes a bold move to get away from her bossy best friend, Daisy.  by opting to go into the Performing Arts high school rather than the science one Daisy where is headed.  Yrena, a teenage Russian dancer,  lives directly across from Rose where they can each see the other but have never made contact until one fateful night.  Yrena's free spirit takes Rose out of her comfort zone and propels her directly into life.  This book is perfect for those younger teens that are struggling with their own identity and I highly recommend it.


  1. It sounds good, would probably not have noticed it otherwise.

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