Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Ruined (Ruined, #1)

Paula Morris
309 pages
Publisher: Point
Source: purchased

You can read the Goodreads summary.

I found this book in the YA section of my favorite used bookstore.  It seems like the past few times I went, I would pick this one up, consider it, and leave it behind, but I finally purchased it for myself last week.  Even though I'd never heard of it before, it sounded like a really great YA novel and the cover really attracted me.

When Rebecca's father must travel to China of business, Rebecca is sent to live in New Orleans with her aunt and cousin.  As a New Yorker, Rebecca couldn't feel more out of place in the deep south with their strange traditions and social hierarchies permeating the private high school she's attending.  The one thing her aunt tells her she must absolutely not do is visit the cemetery across the street; so naturally Rebecca checks it out one night and she meets a new friend, Lisette.  But she soon discovers Lisette is more than she seems and Rebecca has been inadvertently pulled in to a family curse that's been happening for over a century and a half.

This was billed as a ghost story, which it is, though it wasn't nearly as haunting as I anticipated.  Though there are hundreds upon hundreds of ghosts in New Orleans (according to the book) we really only get to know one and she's doesn't have an ounce of scary in her.

In addition, the Goodreads summary states upfront, "A gripping YA supernatural novel set in New Orleans: TWILIGHT with a ghostly twist."  This led me to believe there would be either a great romance or a dramatic love triangle - there was neither.  There were a few kisses, but that was about it, and I felt no chemistry at all between Rebecca and her love interest, or any of the characters for that matter.

I felt like the writing and plot were pretty basic in Ruined and while I enjoyed the novel while I was reading it, I felt like it had so much more potential to be complex and compelling.  Overall, this book was okay.  It's billed as YA, but I think perhaps a younger set would enjoy it more than I did.  Evidently there will be a sequel, Unbroken, due out this coming August.


  1. I love paranormal books that take place in New Orleans. With all the "real ghost stories" that are known around those areas, it makes a great setting for paranormal books. I mean Mary Leveau was the voodoo queen down there. I bet that city is crawling with cool history. I plan on visiting one day. Well anyways, when I saw your review, I knew I wanted to read this book, so thanks for the post! Look forward to reading more from you!

    1. I've never been to New Orleans, but I bet it's a fascinating place to visit and I hope to get there someday and take one of those hokey ghost tours. Thanks for following!


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