A retelling of a Gothic classic ...YA style.
Author: A. E Rought
Publisher: Strange Chemistry
My ratings: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Released: 8th January, 2013
Despite reading not so positive review half way through the book, I ploughed on reading this YA retelling of the classic tale of Frankenstein. I have to say, I’m glad I ignore negative reviews or else I would have missed on all the magic created by A. E. Rought.
Emma is mourning. The love of her life, Daniel died only a few months ago and she is still grieving. Skulking in cemeteries and walking in deserted alleys in the evening is her life now. No matter what she does she can’t get the image of Daniel falling to his death, out her mind. She goes through the daily ritual of her life, without any passion and zeal to live. Then one day, walks in Alex Franks. The tall and mysterious guy at school seems to have a strange connection with Emma. He reminds her too much of Daniel and try she may she finds herself drawn to him. They have chemistry and every time they meet it feels like they have known each other forever. Confused will be too simple an emotion to describe what Emma feels as she tries to figure out what’s happening around her.
Emma is the heart and soul of Broken. Her grieve was palpable. She was living and breathing her nightmare, unable to let go. It’s not easy to watch you loved one die in front of you. She is floating in her life trying to get back to how it was before but knows it will never be the same again. Rought wrote her so well that I could feel her pain in every line she wrote about Daniel. I felt her joy, her confusion and especially how her heart would have felt grieving the loss. It was Emma who made Broken credible.
” I’m not Emma any more, just hut and loss and anguish in a sack of skin and possibly broken bones. Emotion scores my insides, scrapes them out with the force of a tidal wave.”
Alex was your typical YA hero or was he? He was tall, dark and mysterious but I liked how he was forthcoming about his emotions. He liked Emma and was not afraid to show it. There were elements of insta-love which we all have come to dislike in YA but there was a reason why it was like this and funnily it worked. I loved the scenes between Emma and Alex and how detailed they were.
” I’m his dream come to life, it’s written on every line of his face. The world narrows to us, thought die. His mismatched hazel eyes fill my vision, the black freckle in the left iris pulling me in, pushing me under. A vine of darkness unfurls in me, nudging and probing, …”
Rought took no short cuts in trying to convey what the narrator was seeing by describing Alex’s scars and his eyes and his smile. The scenes between them were so sweet and heart breaking as I knew (thanks to the blurb and the publicity declaring Broken as a remake) as to why Alex was so much like Daniel.
There were plenty of side characters like Emma’s BFF, Bree but my favourite had to her mum. She reminded me of my Mum. Sometimes strict and always there when I needed her.
Then why did I knock of half a star? Well, I wanted to give it 4 stars but I enjoyed that start too much to let the lack lustre hasty ending bother me. Things simply spiralled out of control at the end. The mildly annoying characters suddenly become villainous that I wouldn’t have guessed they were actually evil as it would be lame to think the author would make it so easy for me to guess. The ending seemed strange and seemed kind of picture perfect. There were larger issues at hand which were not dealt with. I wonder if they are planning to make a sequel.
“Lost so long ago in the shadows of loss, only to be shoved headlong in to unnatural horror and heart ache, I can’t turn him away. He’s a kindred soul. Broken, remade and my perfect match.”
Regardless of my whining, and the not so positive reviews floating about, I still enjoyed Broken. Its characters were what gave Broken an edge, the romantic scenes were simply magical and I can’t blame Emma for falling so quickly in love with Alex. With his leather jacket, hoodie with its hood up, designer jeans and scars which scream bad boy….who wouldn’t? Ahem. Returning to the review, Broken is worth giving a try if you want to read a creepy, gothic tale of romance with a modern twist to it. Broken made my heart skip s few beats and it still managed to give me the creeps. I’d recommend it to any YA romance fan who may want a taste of love on the dark side with a squeeze of Goth to really make it come alive.
Arc provided by Strange Chemistry