Review: Abandon

Abandon by Meg Cabot
Genre: YA
ISBN: 9780545284103
Published: April 26th 2011 by Point

Rating: 4

I read Meg Cabot's Vanished series (previously published as 1-800-WHERE-R-U) and have drawn the same conclusion about Abandon as I did about that series: She's a fabulous story teller and can weave a wonderful intriguing mysterious story that is highly addicting (I read Abandon in five hours without stopping) but she's not a very good writer.

Let me explain: The ARC was 304 pages. If she had cut out all the unneeded phrases, descriptions, and dead wood that slowed the story down and made it harder to read, it would be closer to 200. If it were shorter, she'd have more space for more of that great plot line that she's so good at developing. But instead, I'm stuck tripping over ungrammatical sentences and awkward phrases—and let's not forget whole unnecessary paragraphs with details that don't matter, set off by dashes right in the middle of the sentence, because that's just such a good thing to put in a novel—that force you to go back and read the sentence several times so your brain doesn't get to twisted.

As for the story itself: I can't praise it enough. It was a mystery I had to solve, and some of the small clues I figured out, and others I didn't. I loved that I could figure out stuff about the same time Pierce did, but I also loved that I didn't figure out the major mystery of the story until I was supposed to. Some novelists make it too obvious, but Cabot had just enough to make it work.

I liked Pierce, but there were a few times I wanted to shake her and tell her to grow up and be honest. That is one of the reasons I couldn't stop reading, though. I wanted to see what happened because of the choices she made. And then there was the time I wanted to slap her: of course John was in love with her, why did she think he was acting like that? silly girl. Yet I couldn't have mean thoughts towards her because I liked her (and, okay, I have a soft spot for crazy main characters). John? He was quite amazing. Wild thing. Dark troubled boy. Dangerous. John needs to climb out of that novel and through my bedroom window and be my boyfriend.

The pacing and tension was perfect: I started reading and didn't stop until about five hours later when I closed the book at the end. I couldn't stop reading. That's the kind of book I like.

Now if only Cabot could write. Yes I have read worse writers, but she would be so excellent if the interior monologue of the character was less frustrating.

Content/Recommendation: No language, no sex. Ages 15+

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