Abandon by Meg Cabot
The Skinny: Pierce has been dead – literally. After an accident involving a too long scarf and a faulty pool cover, she is brought back to life, but not after a brief visit to the Underworld. Barely escaping, Pierce is revived and comes back not quite herself. When her parents divorce, her mother moves her to the small island town where she grew up. As Pierce tries to regain her life, trying to move on from her brief stint with death, she finds it increasingly harder to escape this time from the mysterious man she met in the Underworld. But as more and more bad things begin to happen in her life, Pierce slowly begins to put the pieces together – someone, or something, is after her and, if she’s not careful, she may end up back in the one place she hopes to avoid: the Underworld.
BFF?: Pierce incited some mixed feelings for me. She was vague at times, sort of just hinting at stuff; I wanted to say “Look! Just tell me WTF is up!” There were a few times when I wanted to put my hands on her shoulders and tell her, in my best Cher impression, “Snap out of it!” because she just didn’t quite seem to connect with John and I didn’t quite get it. I feel like a lot of Cabot’s characters incite this in me. Like why are you being so stupid and mean to him? Just kiss him already! But Pierce was smart and witty, a little overly cautious, but who wouldn’t be after what she experienced? Pierce was a survivor, not just of death, but of other things too. While she wasn’t someone I think I’d want as a BFF, I think she was well written in that she brought up all these mixed feelings.
Readability: I was kind of disappointed with how this book read. It was interesting, but it sort of dragged. My past experience with Meg Cabot’s work has been pretty amazing, so for this one to be less than stellar bummed me out. That being said, it wasn’t a hard read, but it went back and forth between Pierce’s present and her memories. She hinted at events that left me a little “huh?” but then she’d explain them and I’d think “ohh… now I get it.” It all makes sense, but for first good bit of the book you’re just left in the dark a little bit.
Crush Level: 7
Although we don’t really see much of John and there’s really not much interaction between him and Pierce for us to swoon over, I really got the hots for him! He was broody and serious, but protective and strong… somehow my favorite crushworthy combo! What’s really not to like about John? Aside from being hot, he’s got many great qualities, such as a steady job with excellent job security; he likes to give expensive jewelry; he has a swanky apartment with many amenities; and he’s always there when it really counts. If Pierce doesn’t want to be kidnapped by him, I think I could make a good substitute!
John gives Pierce this necklace while she is in the Underworld and promises it will keep her safe. But this isn’t just an ordinary “keeps-you-safe” necklace; it has a bloody history, changes colors as danger nears, and is wanted by others. I found it interesting to read about all the different changes the necklace goes through, trying to guess what its colors meant.
High School Traditions
There’s nothing quite like reading about a high school tradition to make you nostalgic for your own high school days. Although I can’t think of any traditions my high school had that can compare to the tradition in this book – Coffin Night. <shudders from creepiness>
Commencement Speech: Oh Meg… I wanted to love this book like I love you. I wanted to be entertained and laugh and cry and sigh like I have with your other books. But I just didn’t… I don’t know if the book was too serious in nature, or maybe I just couldn’t get myself into it, but it seems to have missed its mark with me. I enjoyed it, I’m looking forward to the next one in the series, I just didn’t feel like I connected with anything in it. I think my main two complaints were that I didn’t seem to buy most of the main characters – they seemed to either be placeholders or just there to be there – and that there were many “holes” in the book. In fact, there was one scene where one character brings up something and then a paragraph later it states another character brought it up. After many flips back and forth, thinking I’d missed something, I realized it was a mistake on the book’s part. Abandon was an okay read for me, but I feel like it missed being great.
Yearbook Quote: He was a death deity. I was a high school senior.
Superlatives – Best failed attempt at a mythology retelling
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