Review: My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century

Author: Rachel Harris
  • Published: September 11, 2012
  • Publisher: Entangled Publishing
  • Reading Level: Young Adult
  • Pages: 304 pages
  • Source: Publisher

On the precipice of her sixteenth birthday, the last thing lone wolf Cat Crawford wants is an extravagant gala thrown by her bubbly stepmother and well-meaning father. So even though Cat knows the family’s trip to Florence, Italy, is a peace offering, she embraces the magical city and all it offers. But when her curiosity leads her to an unusual gypsy tent, she exits . . . right into Renaissance Firenze.

Thrust into the sixteenth century armed with only a backpack full of contraband future items, Cat joins up with her ancestors, the sweet Alessandra and protective Cipriano, and soon falls for the gorgeous aspiring artist Lorenzo. But when the much-older Niccolo starts sniffing around, Cat realizes that an unwanted birthday party is nothing compared to an unwanted suitor full of creeptastic amore.

Can she find her way back to modern times before her Italian adventure turns into an Italian forever?

~*~Lili's Reflections~*~

This book is all things cute, adorable, cuddly, come-give-me-a-hug-and-never-let-go awesome. I couldn't get enough of it because of its simplicity and adorable plot. This is one easy read that I highly recommend to any reader. It can be finished in a single sitting and the moral of the story is one for any young girl to learn. It is clear that this novel is geared towards a younger young adult audience, but here I am at age seventeen completely gushing over it.

Cat is unlike many daughters of Hollywood. She hates the spotlight, doesn't like being the center of attention, and prefers to read and learn about her Italian heritage than go shopping on Rodeo. In other words, she's the complete opposite of her absentee mother. As her sixteenth birthday approaches, her overly-peppy future step-mother insists on throwing the party to end all parties that will air on MTV and the only compromise Cat can make with her father is a trip to Florence so she can learn more about her heritage. But Cat quickly does something unlike herself when she enters a gypsy tent that will send her back in time to live with her ancestors while she learns some valuable life lessons, all with the help of her wonderful ancestral cousins Alessandra and Cipriano, the amazingly gorgeous and artistic Lorenzo, and the creepy suitor Niccolo. 

The characterization in this novel is sheer genius. I felt for every character within minutes of being introduced to them. Cat was a strong main character that just wanted to get away from the spotlight. She was smart and yearned for true friends. She was the perfect gateway to experience emotions as we read. Both Alessandra and Cipriano are easily likeable as well. Alessandra is the friend and sister that Cat always wished for. Cipriano is always poised, only giving into his playful side when around friends, especially Lorenzo. And he can so easily jumble a girls thoughts. Originally a player, he quickly falls for Cat's unique futuristic ways while in the Renaissance time period as he struggled to follow his dreams of being an artist. Trust me when I say that Lorenzo certainly is a swoon-worthy boy. Niccolo made my skin crawl. Of course, characters like him are not meant to be likable, but I can't help the respect I feel when an author so expertly writes a villain that makes you shiver in disgust. Bravo, Rachel! I loved the supporting characters just as much as I loved the main characters.

 The plot was unique and fresh. Thought it was simple, it was full of amazing emotional moments, epiphanies, and laughs. Anyone who does not have prior knowledge of Italy can easily get immersed in the story and learn. For those who do have prior knowledge of Italy, you can see all of your history lessons coming to life. Whether it be visiting the statue of David mere months after it was created or having to survive being strung into an unforgiving corset, all experiences of the sixteenth century are present in the novel with a hint of present-day flare at the hands of Cat's vocabulary and trusty backpack full of contraband futuristic items. Reading this book will be easy-peasy.

I have to dock a half of a star for the ending. That cliff-hanger! So completely welcome because it sets up an amazing second story, but so completely hated because I want to know what happens now. Rachel Harris, your writing will be the end of me because of an overwhelming anxiety!

Unique characters and a visit to my favorite time period of the Renaissance era, this book is nothing but a recipe for success that can satisfy any reader looking for a light romance that will make you giddy. Harris will capture your heart easily with her debut novel and amazing writing style and her characters will make it impossible to ever let go.


This is a cute cover. A sixteen year old from modern times suddenly pops up in the sixteenth century. How else would she dress? It's quirky and adorable and put a smile on my face.

4.5 stars 


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  1. I kind of passed over this book unsure but I have read a lot of great reviews of it. I just love a fun and cute read every now and then. Cat is definitely weird not wanting to shop on Rodeo Drive!!! LOL But glad to hear all the characters were so great and likable! Hard to come by! I love time travel but if she falls in love with a guy there then what does she do? Maybe has something to do with the horrible cliffhanger! I also hate those.

    1. This is definitely one worth checking out, Jennifer!

  2. Great review! I loved all the characters and Rachel Harris' writing was superb. I agree that all the characterizations were fabulous. I adored Cat's inner monologue. Funny and cute! And that cliffhanger, lol! It was such a tease :)

    1. Ugh, I want the second book already! lol

  3. I loved the cover of this book, but I wasn't entirely sure that I would love the book so it did not go on my TBR. After reading all of the fantastic reviews, I think I may have made a mistake. Until now, though, I have kept myself from adding it. Now I am going to head over to Goodreads and add it already. I think I might end up liking it more than I think. Thanks for the review!

  4. I'm really dying to read this. Thanks for a great review and thanks so much for linking up your review on Hot Off the Presses.