Friday, 31 May 2013

Book Review - The Blessed

Title: The Blessed
Author: Tonya Hurley
Series: The Blessed (book 1)
Publisher: Hodder Children's Books
Release Date: 2 Aug 2012
ISBN-13: 978-1444904758

Brooklyn teens Lucy, Cecilia and Agnes find themselves in the emergency room at Perpetual Help Hospital at the lowest point in their lives. Lucy, the superficial party girl; Cecilia, a drop out rock chick; and Agnes, a hopeless romantic. All rebels running from their lives and themselves, plagued by broken hearts and broken dreams.
Enter Sebastian: mysterious, compelling, seductive.
He brings the girls together and seems to provide each of them with what they long for ... and they begin to heal.
But Sebastian is on the run - and soon the girls are hunted too ...

My Review
I absolutely loved the clever, quirky and gripping writing in Hurley's other series - The Ghostgirl books. Since then I've looked out for something else by her and then this was released. It took me a while to get a copy but it came in at the library and I brought it home to read.
My first feeling whilst reading this book was 'what on earth am I reading? I'm not even sure I like this', but I kept reading. The blurb actually sounded pretty interesting, I wasn't sure what I was going to get from this book but what I did get was not at all what I had expected to come out. 
We are introduced to 3 girls, Agnes, Cece and Lucy. They all meet in the Perpetual Help Hospital, Agnes tried to commit suicide after her boyfriend dumped her, Lucy is a mini celeb who overdosed in a club and Cece is an aspiring musician who was found face down in a puddle - nearly drowned. My only problem with these girls is that they are all quite shallow and I never really cared about any of them. You don't really get to know all that much about them but to be honest I didn't really want to anyway. Agnes is probably the one you get to know the most, she's a hopeless romantic who doesn't get on well with her 'controlling' mother, but she seemed to be very self centered and very stubborn and just caused trouble for herself.
Then we have Sebastian, the 'mysterious' stranger, he pulls the three girls to him, through 3 bracelets, something about him draws them to him, but I couldn't personally see the appeal, he was rumoured to be a psychopath and to be honest he did come across that way. He believes himself to be some sort of saint sent on a mission but he was just delusional and trippy. 
I was so confused with this story, apparently it was supposed to be a sort of re-telling of three saint stories - (Agnes, Lucy and Cecelia) which means it does have a religious aspect to the book, and I got the basic undertones of that and wondered what would become of them but that was mixed with a whole load of strangeness that made me go 'What?!'
For one, at one point in the abandoned church they are all hiding out in Agnes is feverish and her wrist wounds are infected and she is what seems minutes from passing out and dying. Next thing you know they are all walking away from the church and Sebastian and she goes home and she has 'fading incisions' and only 'scars' to remind her of her experiences. How on earth did they heal that quickly, with absolutely no medical help? Unless I missed something.
The easiest way to sum up this book is just Weird, I felt like there was a good plot line in there but for me it just didn't come through. I did finish the book and worked my way through it, at over 400 pages it felt quite long. 

Others more into Cult stories or books with religious aspects or even more sort of Gothic fiction would probably like this, but for me it just left me feeling confused. Just wasn't for me.

My Rating


Maji Bookshelf said...

when this book first came out, I wanted to get it because it had a gorgeous cover (the one I'm used to is the US cover), however all the reviews were very similar to yours. They were so confused, and the plot was so choppy (like the whole wrist cut infection), as well as Sebastian being a psychopath and the whole random retelling.

great review,
- Juhina @ Maji Bookshelf

barmybex said...

Thanks for stopping by. Glad I'm not the only one that felt that way! :D