It is so so hard to find the right words to review this book, but I sure will. On my blog. Tomorrow. Because it is passed midnight and I had to stay up to finish it and now I can’t sleep because, you know. I wasn’t spoiled on the ending but I still somewhat expected it. That doesnt mean it didnt crushed my soul. Oh man. Tears. But the power of this book isnt in the ending, and its not about trying to make a wrong thing right (in this case, romanticizing incest). Its about the possible consequences of a dysfunctional family and its also about an issue that isnt discussed much in books, social anxiety. I loved Lochan and I sympathized with him through the whole story. The guy had it rough, and he tried his best. The mother was seriously pissing me off, but I think it was the point. All in all, this book was uncomfortable and awkward, yet very touching and tragic. Open mind required.
Ok now let me explain a few things further. About the open mind? Yeah, this book is about a brother and a sister in love with eatch other. But… that’s just a concept, an idea. What can get really uncomfortable is the details that the author put in the intimate scenes. I mean, let’s be real. When two characters are in love and develop a relationship in a YA novel, we usually don’t get 100% satisfied with the information given. The intimate scenes are always either only hinted or cut short when the fun really begins (not being a perv here, just stating the facts). And it is totally understandable when you think that YA is also considered 13 years and older. At 13 years old, you know how babies are made, you’re maybe already making out. But few of us were “there yet” at this age, so most of the times, as long as you get to see a bit of the passion and you know what’s happening, there is no need to be explicit about it. In this book, however, those scenes are described from beginning to end. WHY?! I mean, isn’t it funny that when we want more details and could totally have them without any controversy we usually don’t, but now that a brother and a sister want to play doctor, let’s give out every details of how and when and WOW ok some of those scenes were indeed a bit awkward to go through.
This book doesn’t provide you with a satisfying end. This book doesn’t leave you anything other than mildly depressed. I cried because I’m a crier, but than I couldn’t sleep because of the pain I felt. I had to remind myself it was fiction. I woke up twice during the night, those 2 times immediatly reminded of the story I just read and unable to fall asleep for a while because of the unease it made me feel. The best words I can come up with to describe the story as a whole are TRAGIC, INJUSTICE, SADNESS. The kind of sadness that never leaves you (I’m talking about the characters, not about my reaction). Tragic yes, a tragic love story. I don’t know if I’d recommend it, even though I loved it. I wouldn’t want someone to read it and feel as bad as it made me feel for a while, or to read it to superficially to understand all the underlying meaning of this forbidden relationship and how important it was for them. They had a shitty life and their affection for eachother was the only thing they had. But I strongly believe they wouldnt have felt the same way would their family have been a normal one, with present and caring parents. So, read it at your risks, but be prepared to be emotionally shaken.
Oh and a last note, I believe this book could have been 100 pages lighter, a lot of situations repeating themselves before anything actually happened. But maybe it was to reinforce what their life was like before they knew, before they acted on their feelings versus after, I don’t know.
You can buy the gorgeous UK black edition on the Book Depository (american edition is red) and get free international shipping!