Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Abandon Review

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Author: Meg Cabot
Publisher: Scholastic
Release Date: April 26, 2011
Hardcover: 320 pages
Summary: (taken from Goodreads)

Though she tries returning to the life she knew before the accident, Pierce can't help but feel at once a part of this world, and apart from it. Yet she's never alone . . . because someone is always watching her. Escape from the realm of the dead is impossible when someone there wants you back.
But now she's moved to a new town. Maybe at her new school, she can start fresh. Maybe she can stop feeling so afraid.
Only she can't. Because even here, he finds her. That's how desperately he wants her back. She knows he's no guardian angel, and his dark world isn't exactly heaven, yet she can't stay away . . . especially since he always appears when she least expects it, but exactly when she needs him most.
But if she lets herself fall any further, she may just find herself back in the one place she most fears: the Underworld.

I am a huge fan of Meg Cabot, because whenever I pick up a book she's written, I know that it's going to be fun, hilarious, and entertaining. Her stories sweep me up, taking me into some sort of fiction-vortex, releasing me only after I've read through to the end. So it was a little surprising to realize that Abandon isn't this sort of fun, easy-reading type of story at all. In fact, it's dark, serious, and has very little laugh-out-loud humor at all.

But I liked it.

Given the subject matter, it only makes sense that this story isn't hilariously funny, and I think Meg does an excellent job in switching gears. What I appreciated most about the story is the set-up. For some, this book may drag a little, because of the care Meg puts into its development. (In my opinion, this just shows the trust she puts into her fans to stick with it until the end.) I really felt connected to Pierce and her situation. And though there wasn't a payoff large enough to make up for all the set-up at the beginning, the ending was enough to make me want the sequel, because I do think that Meg has an epic payoff for us at the end of the series and I can't wait to get it.

I also love how all the details at the beginning come together at the end -- I wasn't able to fully predict the ending of this one, which was very exciting. Also, this is a book that can lead to a lot of discussion about mythology and death, which I think is very cool. It would be a great addition to a book club or even a classroom, with the right lesson plan.

What can I say? Meg has once again got me hooked on yet another one of her series. (Not that I'm complaining!)

My rating: 4

**I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. A special thanks goes to Ann Larson, Meg Cabot's assistant, for making sure I got on the publisher's list of ARC requests. And another thanks to Scholastic for sending me an ARC of this book. I greatly enjoyed it.