Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly
Andi, a girl from modern-day Brooklyn finds a diary written by Alexandrine, who lived during the French Revolution and helped young Louis-Charles, the king's son.
The details of the past are gritty. Andi relates to the diary because she's healing after tragedy--her brother Truman died almost two years ago. She blames herself.
In modern-day Paris, Andi meets a colorful crew of musicians and researches a fictional composer. Andi loves playing guitar--the eclectic music references and the revealing of a hidden Paris are the best parts.
The book is long but gets really good on 375—don’t give up!
Song to Read By: "If I Ever Feel Better" by Phoenix (a French band): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jJp3kVelU3c