Thursday, July 21, 2011
Reivew: Imaginary Girls
Title: Imaginary Girls
Author: Nova Ren Suma
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Page Count: 352 (hardcover)
My Rating: 3/5 stars
Description: (from GoodReads)
Chloe's older sister, Ruby, is the girl everyone looks to and longs for, who can't be captured or caged. When a night with Ruby's friends goes horribly wrong and Chloe discovers the dead body of her classmate London Hayes left floating in the reservoir, Chloe is sent away from town and away from Ruby.
But Ruby will do anything to get her sister back, and when Chloe returns to town two years later, deadly surprises await. As Chloe flirts with the truth that Ruby has hidden deeply away, the fragile line between life and death is redrawn by the complex bonds of sisterhood.
I really wanted to love this book. From the very first time I saw the cover on a blog I was hopping through and it grabbed me and I had to know what it was about. The description that they put on Amazon and GoodReads doesn’t really tell a lot about what it was about, so when it came out I got it the first chance I had and started reading it.
I know a lot of people have said this, but the whole book really did feel like a bad dream that you didn’t wake out of, but for me it might not have been for the same reason as the author might have intended.
In books, there is a line between relationships where one person has an intense instinct to protect the person they care about and for that person to be down right controlling. (In my opinion, it is the difference between Jace/Clary and Edward/Bella). And I recognize that that is sometimes a very fine line, but I felt like the line was crossed in this book, and Ruby was very controlling of Chloe. Throughout the whole book it felt strange, because it was more of Chloe witnessing what is happening than Chloe actually doing anything herself. She was more along for the ride, and I thought that was weird because the book is told through her perspective. In books, that controlling type of relationship is a real pet peeve of mine, so that was one of the books drawbacks for me.
Another was that most of the characters in the book are older teenagers, and it seemed that every chapter they were out partying somewhere, drinking, smoking joints in cemeteries, and though their were plenty of characters who hooked up, throughout the whole book there wasn’t even one healthy relationship that I could find. What’s worse was that all of this did not add a single thing to the plot of this book. It just felt completely unnecessary to me.
Another thing was that after two hundred pages of this illegal activity (which was maybe the author’s stab at showing how bored the kids in the small town were?) I still didn’t have a clear picture of what was going on, and that feeling remained to some extent all the way until the end of the book, which did in no way really wrap anything up for me. I suppose that that ties in with the bad dream piece of it, I don’t know what’s going on in a lot of my dreams, but for a book a conclusion, even one as simple as the main character waking up and finding it really was a dream would have been enough for me.
Having said that. I did like the writing. Some of the images were very dreamlike, and it wasn’t a boring book. It just wasn’t my cup of tea. I think I would have liked it a lot more without all the unnecessary drinking, smoking, and partying. If I had gone into it knowing it was going to be written like a long, drawn-out dream and not spent so long looking for where the plot was going, I would have given it another star or two.
I don’t want to discourage you from reading this book, I have read quite a few great reviews on it, but I feel like I have to be honest with my thoughts and so I have been. The cover most definitely gets a 5 from me though.