Ivy Introspective by Kellyn Roth | Review

Are y’all getting tired of these reviews yet? 😛 Because I’ve already hit 20 reviewed books- not all of them are on this blog, though. Some are only on Goodreads. But 20 book reviews!!! In the space of 3 months!!! If I might say so myself, that’s a decent amount. ;D

Well, there are a couple more reviews to go, and then I’ll do a book-related tag (what else?). Definitely looking forward to that one! After that I have a couple more book reviews, and then the book review craze will die down a bit, and then finally I’ll do some regular bookish posts. But I promise I’ll make the book reviews as interesting as I can. ;P

In the meantime, expect another post on my design blog sometime today.

(And ONE MORE THING: Go sign up for the Stellae Books monthly newsletter!) Alright, enough promo. Onto the review!

p.s. you should probably go read my review of The Dressmaker’s Secret, the first book in The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy, if you haven’t already, because I talk about Kellyn’s wonderful and fantastic worldbuilding and plots and amazing writing so go please. 🙂

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by Kellyn Roth

hellopleasetalktome.jpg Trapped in a world where she doesn’t belong, twelve-year-old Ivy struggles to keep her head above water as her simplicity is brought to light by her new position as a young lady growing up at Pearlbelle Park.

After much thought, Ivy’s parents decide to send her to McCale House, a boarding school in Scotland for girls and boys like her. However, scared and worried away from her beloved mother, sister, and nurse, Ivy can’t seem to focus.

Will Ivy ever learn what Dr. McCale is trying to teach her? Or will she remain lost in her own mind forever?

taken from Goodreads


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HOW BRILLIANT IS THIS BOOK. Once I read it, I immediately knew that it was my favorite out of the ones I had read already. While, yes, I did enjoy learning about Alice and her family in The Dressmaker’s Secret… it’s about an eight year old, and I can’t say I relate a ton. After all, I don’t exactly remember my thought processes as an eight year old. but YES I STILL LOVED IT AND I STILL CAN’T GET OVER HOW GOOD IT WAS. However, Ivy Introspective is about a 12 year old girl, Ivy, who is more simple minded than other girls her age, because she has high-functioning autism. And I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned it in my reviews yet, but books including main characters with special needs hit close to my heart, and this book certainly did so. So that’s why I like it better than The Dressmaker’s Secret. But that isn’t what this review is about, right?

So I was talking about how Ivy Introspective is about Ivy, who has high-functioning autism. I wasn’t really sure how this would play out at first, but my doubts died away pretty quick, because Kellyn wrote about Ivy’s condition with a really soft hand that wasn’t condescending at all + with a familiarity of that subject, which I was very appreciative of.

Also, in the story Ivy gets sent to a boarding school named McCale House (not a spoiler- it’s in the blurb) for girls like her, and I must say I wasn’t a huge fan of that. But it was really cool seeing what happened! I love how Ivy blossomed as a person and how she tended to Violet and became an amazing friend and wow I want to be friends with her. o.o And her struggles with homesickness and loneliness were definitely relatable. Good job, Kellyn. ❤

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  • Mr. and Mrs. Knight: I mentioned in my review of The Dressmaker’s Secret that I didn’t really like them. Yeah, my views of them haven’t really changed.
  • Mrs. Angel: I’m not sure if I like Mrs. Angel? She seems nice, but Violet’s views of her seem to fluctuate a lot.
  • Dr. and Mrs. McCale: They’re such sweethearts. I love them. ❤
  • Posy and Captain Parker: I’m kind of confused as to why they’re in the story? I feel like the book would’ve gone well without them in it? Or maybe I just missed something.
  • Violet: I want to see more of Violet in future books too! She’s one of the patients/children at McCale House, and I love her relationship with Ivy. ❤ I also love how terribly practical she is sometimes. xD
  • Ivy: Ivy never ceases to amuse me (read quotes below). 😀 I love her personality, and I hope to see A LOT more of her in future books.

Wow, the way Kellyn developes characters and scenes so you know them at a glance. Her characters’ personalities are so distinctive and that’s one of my favorite things ever to read in a book. It was such a blessing to have the opportunity to read this book, and her characters’ developments and personalities hold a big factor in that.

Overall, lovely and well-rounded characters. 

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Credit for the “best quotes” idea: Kate Willis’ reviews on Goodreads. Thanks Kate!

Get ready for a lot of these from Ivy. I feel like if you haven’t read these quotes you might think “Oh, Alice seems rebellious and a little harsh” but she truly isn’t, so please keep that in mind. 😀 All page numbers are from the PDF version.

Alice: “Your hair can’t hurt; it has no feelings.”

Ivy: “Well, the place where my hair attaches to my head hurts.” ~ pg. 7

I don’t know why I thought that was so funny. XD It just is.

Ivy: “Won’t Mummy be angry if she sees your hair down again? She says it makes you look like a gypsy.”

Alice: “She isn’t up yet.”

“But shouldn’t you do what she wants even when she’s not here?” Ivy asked. ~ pg. 7

Ivy’s such an angel. ❤

A slow smile spread across Ivy’s face. “Mummy’s beautiful,” she whispered reverently.

“She’s a handsome woman,” Mrs. Angel agreed.

Ivy didn’t respond to this, as she thought only men could be handsome and was somewhat confused. ~ pg. 20

Aw, this quote is precious and had me laughing hard. ❤ xD

Ivy rolled back over and stared at her aunt’s sleeping face. Miss Christina’s mouth hung open slightly and her hair was in unbelievably knotty tangles, but she seemed peaceful.

Ivy jumped on her.

“Ouch! Ivy!” Miss Christina exclaimed, sitting up in bed. “You mustn’t be quite so … so violent in your awakening methods!” ~ pg. 94

oh my golden goodness. THIS QUOTE MADE ME LAUGH SO HARD. *dies laughing reading it again* This is why I like books with humor, y’know? It’s absolutely hilarious reading quotes like these. xD

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All of these things I’ve mentioned are barely described.

  • romance such as very-barely-described kisses
  • screams and nightmares from a patient in McCale House
  • mentions of ghosts. However, this idea is discarded as “nonsense” in the book.

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One of the most precious and perfect books I’ve read this year. I’m so grateful I got a chance to read this; thank you, Kellyn. 5 stars without a doubt.

Recommended to all of my lovely friends reading this. Yes, go read it. (in other words as long as you’re above 12 I think you would absolutely adore this book) (and all the other books in these chronicles)

*FTC DISCLOSURE: I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. These are my honest thoughts and opinions, and a positive review was not required.*

Have you read this lovely book, or any book of Kellyn’s? Direct me to your review- I’d love to see what you thought of it!

Any questions? Ask in the comments, or shoot me an email!

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10 thoughts on “Ivy Introspective by Kellyn Roth | Review

    1. of course you want to read it my reviews have that effect on people

      (jkjk at least I hope they do…? or maybe my reviews are just plain weird and make zero sense)

      Thanks for commenting, Grae! And dude- you should get Goodreads so you can mark books as To-Be-Read and Read and Currently Reading. Highly recommend. 😉


        1. Oh, it’s just a platform to keep track of the books you read- it is free. It’s really good too if you want to get involved in a really nice writer + reader community (I’m good friends with an author I adore on Goodreads). Your choice though. 😀

          Liked by 1 person

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