Broken Things by Lauren Oliver | ARC Review
Release date: October 4, 2018
How I got the copy: HarperCollins Canada
I had a hard time getting into this, I found it too long, and I can’t say I really enjoyed it. There weren’t enough exciting elements or clues of mystery to keep me hooked. I tend to really enjoy psychological thrillers but I can’t say I enjoy many young adult psychological thriller. I haven’t found one that’s quite believable or really convincing to me yet.
Broken Things follows two girls, Brynn and Mia, who’s friend, Summer, was brutally murdered in the woods and everyone is convinced it was the both of them. After the interrogation, the girls were driven in different directions and once they left the police station the day of the murder they were left alone and friendless. With the entire town against them and trying to push them out.
A part of the novel that I’m not convinced about is the make believe Narnia-like story that comes to life for all three of the girls. A story they’ve been creating, believing, and “going to” whenever possible that’s based on a novel they obsessed with as children. I think at the point of the novel we meet the girls they’re too old to be completely immersed and convinced that their make believe story is still real. However, as the story goes on, the cracks in the girls make believe story starts to show and they then start looking deeper into their dead friend and their make believe story.
I’m not a big fantasy reader and with the make believe story it brought fantastical elements and I didn’t really care for them. It wasn’t real, the story the girls were writing and “going to” wasn’t real, which meant there was something else happening in the book and it took so long to uncover that. It was juvenile but I completely believe that’s a personal issue rather than an issue with the story.
The story is told in dual perspective and in past and present tense, which I enjoy multiple perspectives and two writing tenses. I enjoyed the back and forth and the way things were being uncovered but like I mentioned already… it just felt like it was taking too long to get there and there was a lot of juvenile banter when the heart of the issue was clearing their names.
The novel is full of small town corruption and that’s something I enjoy reading about, living in a small town for a while myself, it has a murder/crime aspect to the story, which is something else I enjoy reading about and Broken Things includes real issues young adults go through but this one just didn’t hit the mark for me.
*A copy of this book was provided by HarperCollins Canada in exchange for an honest review*