Rose Rivers

By Jacqueline Wilson

Young Quills reviews

Rose RiversRosie M (13)’s review
In Rose Rivers there are many interesting characters and one of the most interesting was Rose’s mother as her character was very contradicting. At one point she would be expecting Rose to be grown up and ladylike but when it suited her, she was a child and was not allowed to be with and adults. This made her my least favourite character she also was a hypocrite and hated all her children apart from Rupert.

The time the story is set in changed the way everyone talked and the manners and social etiquette of parties and other occasions. One other big change is what is expected for women and men and their different rolls: Rose was expected to stay at home and have no education, where as her brother went to school and was expected to inherit his granddad’s business.

Most of the story was serious and problems were constantly arising, some were instantly solved while others take the whole book to be addressed; I liked this differing story structure. Although it was serious there was also many light-hearted moments especially between the siblings and Rose and Paris (in there painting sessions).

One thing that stood out to me was the relationship between Rupert and Rose – they are twins but despite this they were completely different. Rose was way more tolerable against Rupert then she is with everyone else even though he was a liar and can be very self-centred.

I would recommend this book to other pupils especially if they like stories told in first person, as it is told in the perspective of the thirteen-year-old girl in the Victorian era.

Overall I liked this book a lot because something is always going on which keeps you reading. Also, the pace of the story differs throughout the whole book. Not all questions are answered by the end but that lets the reader imagine what happens next.

Caitlin’s review
The character I found most interesting was Clover Moon because she appears in another book and Rose Rivers is the follow on story from the book Clover Moon. She is a servant but has a complicated but interesting back story.

The character I didn’t like was Rose’s brother, Rupert. He is vain and doesn’t think about anyone but himself. He doesn’t listen to what Rose is trying to tell him and he always acts like the perfect child in front of everyone but Rose and won’t admit when he is wrong.

I learnt how children in the Victorian times were treated and how boys were allowed to go to school but girls weren’t. It showed the children could become servants from the age of 11.

The book stands out because it was written from the perspective of the eldest child of a rich family and the plot was thought provoking. She was bored because she wasn’t allowed to go to school or given the freedom to do the things she wanted to do.

I would not recommend the book because although the story was good, it was ruined by the ending. It did not come to a complete conclusion and it came to an abrupt finish.

Mabel’s review
The characters I found interesting in this book are Clover, the nursery maid, Beth, Rose’s troubled sister, and Mrs Budd, Beth’s nurse. I didn’t like Rose that much and I found Paris very creepy for kissing a 13-year-old. I learnt that Hyde Park was still a thing hundreds of years ago. The time it was set was interesting because they used interesting dialect. It was not realistic because her parents wouldn’t have stayed together as they did not love each other, and at the beginning it was said that the Dad had the money but later on her Mum had the money. The plot was exciting. I enjoyed this book.

Star rating ★★★★

Darcey’s review
I thoroughly enjoyed this book because it has a bit of history and it has problems that people in that time struggled with. The main character, Rose, has 6 other siblings including her twin brother Rupert. A series of different things happen and she does lots of things to help her troubled sister Beth. The book includes the characters Hetty Feather from the books Hetty Feather, Sapphire Battersea, Emerald Star, Hetty Feather’s Journal, and Hetty’s Christmas. And it also includes Clover Moon from the book Clover Moon. I would rate this book 9.5 out of 10 and I would say it is for people between 10 – 14.

Livi’s review
Which of the characters did you find interesting, and why? Which didn’t you like, and why?
I found Rose quite interesting because she’s supposed to be a lady but she’s quite ambitious anyway. I didn’t not like any characters.

Did you learn anything new about the past from the book?
That boys get a huge amount more than girls!

Was the plot exciting, thought-provoking, light-hearted, (or any combination of these)?
There wasn’t much plot.

What stood out for you from the book?

Would you recommend it to other pupils?

Glory’s review
I found Beth really interesting because of her disability, she was hidden from the world. I also really liked the description of Paris, but I didn’t really like the mother whom they call Mama because she definitely favoured Rupert over Rose and tried to pretend Beth didn’t exist, which was really sad. I also didn’t really like Nurse Budd because she was “helping” Beth by giving her a drug (I think it was opium).

I learned that girls didn’t go to school and that disabled people were hidden away.

The plot wasn’t great, it was just based on Rose and how she loved Paris. It wasn’t the type that made you go “ooh” or “aah” just “oh”.

I wouldn’t recommend it because I was a huge fan of Jacqueline Wilson and have read ALL of them and this one was definitely the worst and now I don’t read her as much anymore. Other people might like it but it doesn’t appeal to me.

Eve’s review
I found Beth an interesting character as she wasn’t really understood by the other characters and she was very different. I found Beth very interesting. I didn’t like the character of Rose as I thought she was very privileged and a little bit annoying. From this book I learned more about the different ways girls were treated from boys in Victorian times. The book was set in the Victorian era which is one of my favourite eras in History to learn and read about. The plot of Rose Rivers was both light-hearted and serious as it was about a normal girl who just wanted to be able to go to a boarding school like her twin brother, but it also highlighted some big issues of that time including the divide between men and women and briefly the divide between the wealthy and poor. I would definitely recommend this book to other people who like the Victorian era and find that interesting.

Evie’s review
Rose Rivers is one of the best Jacqueline Wilson books I have ever read. I love the fact that it didn’t have to be set anywhere that exciting, just the streets of London, but it was very interesting to read. I found the character of the dad very interesting in the way he was the kindest in the family. They were really rich but not that happy and it made me sad when Rose went off to boarding school and her dad did not say goodbye.

Valine’s review
I think Clover Moon, Rose Rivers, and Beth Rivers were the characters I found most interesting, this is because they broadened my mind on how difficult life must of been for the poor, less capable, and also life as a girl during the Victorian times. Throughout the book, Jacqueline Wilson showed how people, who were not of a higher status, were to be excluded from justice, rights, and equality. Rose described her life while growing up and meeting others who were less privileged than herself, such as Clover who was brought as a maid from off the streets. Each time Clover mentioned her earlier stages of life, before becoming a maid, I really felt I was there in the streets, in the cold, with her. This opened my eyes to how fortunate I am, and how I take almost everything for granted.

One of my least favourite characters has to be Nurse Budd because of the way she slyly treated the children (especially Beth) with such cruelty. She was very two-faced, acting polite, pleasant and good-natured towards the parents but harsh towards the children and even barbaric for putting Beth through such danger.

The plot was absolutely thrilling, inspiring, and gripping; it always captured my mind from whatever I was doing; it never became boring and was left on a very exciting cliff hanger, leaving longing for more! While reading, I felt as if I was with her overcoming and encountering all the problems she faced as a girl. I also felt some sympathy and pity for Rose due to the injustice of education, because, I knew (although I take school for granted) I would too fight for a proper education at school.

I think I would definitely recommend it to friends and pupils because of how enjoyable it is with the amazing plot twist at the end of the book. I’m sure they would have the same positive overall comments as me.

All in all, I found this novel very interesting and I have taken in a lot of information on different perspectives and how lives were in the Victorian times. I now feel I could reflect on my new knowledge, which could then make my actions more thankful and generous. It could also perhaps lead me into being more understanding with other people’s problems and maybe more giving to others who are less able or unfortunate.

Lâren’s review
I loved this book as it had so many plot twists. I liked the way it teaches how each class in the Victorian times had to cope with life. Girls had a tough time having to stay at home and entertain themselves, and the poorer classes had to survive on very little food and small pay from their jobs. The rich had very easy lives and with their heritage, they did not need to work. This book has also showed me how over the many years how education has changed for girls. It also opened my eyes to the fact that if children that were troubled now were treated like Beth, the carer would be sent to court. This shows how the law has changed for child cruelty and girls' rights. I think that this book is a great book for children aged 9+ so that they understand the deeper meaning to this book. I hope that there is a sequel to this book as it ended on an exciting cliff hanger.

Megan’s review
Rose Rivers is a rich girl in Victorian England, who struggles to understand the very prominent divide between the wealthy and the poor. The book follows her as she deals with her condescending mother and many siblings, and as she attempts to make friends. In Victorian England, life was very different depending what gender you were. There was a large difference on education, with Rose's twin brother being applauded for going to school, and encouraged to find passions and a career, whereas Rose, who is desperate to learn in a school, is stuck at home preparing to be a well-functioning lady in the Victorian period. This book shows the very strict rules forced upon people by society, expecting girls to be docile and polite, but finding it natural for boys to get into fights, and act unruly. Rose's younger sister Beth was treated and seen only as an invalid, rather than a human being, and characters such as Clover, a servant, was also treated with no respect, being looked down upon simply because of the status she was born as. Clover and Rose's friendship blossoms throughout the story, but due to the patriarchal inequality of this era, and her mother, a character who has a strong need to fit in, their friendship is kept hidden. This leads to Rose feeling guilty due to the privileges she was born into, and the segregation forced between different classes.

Jacqueline Wilson does a great job at covering the prejudices that many people faced for not being born as what was seen as an ideal member of society, and showed that although many people benefited from the inequality, there were still members of society that fought for the rights of others, and understood that they were not worth more or less based on their wealth. This book has helped me understand the vast changes in the world that have occurred to get us to a place where the gender or social standing that you were born with does not define what you can and can't do with your life.

I would recommend this book to anybody who is curious about the Victorian era and the discrimination and struggles of those who lived in it.

Isabelle C’s review
I really enjoyed Rose Rivers as it is an interesting story. It is set in the Victorian times and is very well written. What I liked about the book is how all the characters behaved in the style of the time. Another thing I liked was Rose's protestations about Beth being called stupid and not right in the head. Something I found interesting about it was that the lower class and upper class are friends, something unusual for the times. My favourite character was Beth, as I found her interesting and sensitive. I would recommend the book to anyone, but it may not be suitable for younger readers, as it has references to bodies. The only think I would change would be not seeing Hetty more.

Star rating: 4.

Isla’s review
I really liked Rose Rivers because of how emotional it made me feel; it was as if I was Rose, standing there and watching everything happen. Jacqueline Wilson is an amazing author and I would really recommend her. The story feels so realistic and interesting especially as I love the Victorians. I would rate this book 5 stars.

Caleb W's review
I am really enjoying Rose Rivers at the moment. I really like the way the descriptive language Jacqueline Wilson uses is so much fun. I find the information fascinating about life in Victorian times such as the privileges Rupert as a boy has that Rose as a girl doesn’t, like going to school.

My only criticism is that every time a character is introduced there should be an illustration to show what the character looks like.

I would rate it 9.5 stars out of 10.

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