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Search tags: lauren-oliver
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review 2018-11-30 19:57
Broken Things
Broken Things - Lauren Oliver

I'm a big fan of Oliver's Delirium series and I LOVED the Replica duology, so if there's a new Oliver book, I'm going to pounce on it. Broken Things is more of a murder mystery, and I love that Oliver branches out so much in her writing. 

 

We have three friends, Summer, Brynn and Mia who are obsessed with a fantasy book called The Way into Lovelorn, and love to play act it out. They decide to write their own fan fic sequel to the book, but their lives change forever when Summer is murdered in a similar ritualistic fashion as they wrote in their Return to Lovelorn sequel. Now both Brynn and Mia are suspects along with their friend, Owen.

 

This is a story about a troubled girl who, at times, is unlikable, mean, and broken. Other times, she is the glue that holds their friendship together. The magical, beautiful girl that everyone can't help but love. We get clues to Summer's past and her need to believe in the magic and escape of Lovelorn sprinkled throughout the "Then" chapters chronicling the lives and friendships of the girls before Summer is murdered.

 

In the "Now" chapters we learn how, years later, Brynn, Mia and Owen are dealing with life after being scorned and suspected of murder by their hometown despite the police never having found evidence to pin it on any of them, and their struggle to find the real killer.

 

As always, Oliver's writing kept me glued to the book, despite a particular scene of animal cruelty involving a cat. I have to admit, that was very hard to get through. I'm the type of person who loves a good murder mystery, but will refuse to watch a movie unless I know for a fact that the animal does not die, otherwise my week is ruined. Kill off all the fictional people you want, just please leave the fictional pets alone, and yes, I know it makes no sense whatsoever. 

 

Oliver is really good at writing characters who are flawed and have many different layers. Each character has their own different struggles and insecurities which are revealed as the story progresses. This book is a bit unsettling, and dark at times, but I felt the ending was satisfying. I especially enjoyed that very last sentence.

 

 

-Shey

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review 2018-11-14 19:11
Broken Things
Broken Things - Lauren Oliver
Brynn, Mia and Owen are the Monsters of Brickhouse Lane and according to most of the citizens in town, they killed Summer five years ago. They were linked to the murder but why these three friends brutally murdered Summer, has not surfaced because they believe they are innocent. Individually innocent, as a whole….they’re not quite sure.
 
Written with two different time periods, we get the story from the current period and what happened five years ago. Five years ago, the relationships between these four was a bit shaky. It looked good on the outside but on the inside, individuals were harboring feelings they wouldn’t let out. Brynn, Mia, and Summer were writing a book, a sequel to a book they thought would be their own. It’s a fantasy novel and they kept this novel their secret, or so they thought.
 
Currently, everyone has returned home. Moving about, they notice the whispers and the stares from others as the citizens in town still label them as Summer’s murders. Wanting to investigate Summer’s death and put an end to it, they feel that Summer might have left some clues before her death but have no idea where they might be. As they search for the clues, they discover information about Summer they didn’t have before and they discover information about each other.
 
I liked the mystery and book aspect of the novel. The book that they were writing together, was a fantasy book where they wrote themselves in as characters. This book became a central part of the novel as they realized how important it was to Summer. I thought the ending was a bit rushed and Summer’s murderer (after all the investigating and such) was weak.

 

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text 2018-09-11 18:50
Reading progress update: I've read 18%.
Delirium - Lauren Oliver

Does anyone else have a harder time reading ebooks that actual hardcopies? There's something about seeing my progress through the pages that helps keep me going, and you just don't get that with a Kindle. I'm feeling a slump coming on so I may grab a Book of the Month I have been wanting to read for a while. Or something off my massive TBR cart. Just something to keep me going. 

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text 2018-09-11 02:18
Reading progress update: I've read 12%.
Delirium - Lauren Oliver

Okay, this is actually not all that bad. I'm suspending credit in creativity, though, because this is a lot like Uglies or Matched. Or any other number of YA novels where society deems love/creativity/uniqueness a problem to corrected.

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review 2018-07-03 09:44
‘Broken Things’, a YA thriller, comes off as a bit....broken
Broken Things - Lauren Oliver

I’ve read a lot of great thrillers lately, and despite the fact that this has a great premise (young girls accused of murdering their best friend five years ago, reunite back in the small town that still calls them the ‘Monsters Of Brickhouse Lane’), it just falls short. Putting it another way, this was a thriller that really did end up feeling broken.

 

Five years ago, the case against Mia and Brynn is dropped, and Owen was acquitted in court, after they were accused of brutally killing their friend Summer in what looked like a ritualistic murder. Now that a memorial has brought them back together, the three of them (along with their new tag-along friend, and so-called YouTube fashion sensation Abby), plus Brynn’s second cousin Wade, are now going to solve the murder. 

 

This plot reads immediately like it has been done before and only recently (I do not like comparing to specific books so I won’t). 

I will however, point out how the girls’ obsession with the book ‘The Way Into Lovelorn’ (‘fan fic’ made me do it!), and the similarity of this obsession we see in the real life ‘Slender Man’ killings came off as all too familiar, and so it didn’t seem original or clever for me very early on. I also found myself wanting more from these passages from ‘Lovelorn’ as they gave me few answers as to why I should believe any behaviors should come from this book. As the crux of ‘Broken Things’, these passages needed to be way stronger for me to be convinced that it had anything to do with the killing, the girls’ obsession, and their friendships. 

 

Lauren Oliver is an established and fluid writer; conversations flow well, nothing really seems ‘wrong’ in terms of how the story ‘works’, but I had a hard time getting myself through this, and at times the story seemed to be meandering. Aside from the fact that Summer, the murdered ‘best friend’, seemed to be a nasty piece of work anyway, so I didn’t really care that the others may well have bumped her off, the twist and subsequent Scooby-Doo ‘unmasking’ gave me zero payoff. I felt badly that the characters hadn’t been given more action, especially with how long the book is. 

 

Many will enjoy this thriller but sadly I have to say it’s too long, and has too much jumping around between the two main characters, Brynn (who I just can’t believe would get away with ‘living’ in rehab like she did), and Mia, and the two timelines. The relationships are half way there, and the general ambiance is generally right, but this is a very full genre right now, so I had much higher expectations for this one.

 

*Plus a cat was killed. 

 

 

 

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