review: abandon by meg cabot

Author: Meg Cabot
Publication Date: 04/26/2011
Publisher: Point 
Pages: 320
Source: Library


Though she tries returning to the life she knew before the accident, Pierce can't help but feel at once a part of this world, and apart from it. Yet she's never alone . . . because someone is always watching her. Escape from the realm of the dead is impossible when someone there wants you back.

But now she's moved to a new town. Maybe at her new school, she can start fresh. Maybe she can stop feeling so afraid.
Only she can't. Because even here, he finds her. That's how desperately he wants her back. She knows he's no guardian angel, and his dark world isn't exactly heaven, yet she can't stay away . . . especially since he always appears when she least expects it, but exactly when she needs him most. But if she lets herself fall any further, she may just find herself back in the one place she most fears: the Underworld. (goodreads)

The story begins with a prologue that's not a prologue that mentions the myth of Hades and Persephone (hey, I just read a book like this!) and so I'm incredibly into it until I literally turn the page over to the second where the main character, Pierce Oliviera, tosses aside Persephone and states her problems are bigger and that we'll find out about them.
"A few days ago, if you'd told me some story about a girl who had to go live with a guy in his underground palace for six months out of the year, I'd just have laughed. You think that girl has problems? I'll tell you has problems: me. Way bigger ones than Persephone. (2)"
I have to tell you that right there is where I began to have problems with the book. I never felt a connection with Pierce - she was too flippant and hot-headed. I'm the first person that will tell you that I love a good strong female character but here it didn't work for me and actually went the opposite way.  My biggest problem wasn't with Pierce, however, but with her story. There's a lot of time changing in the story between the present narration and different times in the past that details just how Pierce got to be where she currently is and eventually ends up explaining how she met John (our Hades). So when she and John were having their argument leading up to the big reveal of her stay in the Underworld I was interested again - I mean, it's the Underworld. I love it, tell me more, especially since their conversation made it seem like they had quite a history there.

We change time into the past and find out that Pierce was in the Underworld for all of what seemed like 15 minutes. Half of that time was her trying to figure out how to go home and the other half was her talking to John. There was nothing there that would have explained to me how they had such a deep relationship. And from then on we barely see John until the end, where he turns out not to even be Hades. To be honest, I'm not sure, I had a hard time following what was happening in the story.

I'm sure people will love this book. And maybe this could have been a book I enjoyed had the story been polished into a better flow with more character background. But it wasn't a book for me.

9 comments on "review: abandon by meg cabot"

We Heart YA wrote: Mon May 30, 09:53:00 PM

This seems to be a popular myth (with THE GODDESS TEST out now too)... Not sure what else to say. We haven't been particularly excited (or unexcited, either) about this book, and your review kind of reaffirmed that. We're just sorry *you* didn't enjoy it more!

Jenny wrote: Mon May 30, 11:06:00 PM

I actually keep hearing bad things about this one but I still have high hopes. After all, everyone loved the Twilight books and I hated them. I think I tend to think the opposite of everyone else.

kaye (paper reader) wrote: Mon May 30, 11:13:00 PM

@We Heart YA: I adored THE GODDESS TEST which is maybe why I had high expectations for any book carrying a similar idea. I studied Classics and so I thought I would try this book as I had read only good reviews coming in but... I've been putting off writing this review since I read it. I'm okay with not enjoying it, particularly since after it I read a lot of things I did like, but thank you. :)

@Jenny I definitely encourage people to read any book, regardless of the review. For what it's worth, though, I can't abide Twilight.

kara-karina@Nocturnal Book Reviews wrote: Tue May 31, 05:59:00 AM

I've won this book and The Goddess Test :) Just waiting for them to be delivered. It will be interesting to compare the notes :) I can't stand Twilight too.

Natalie wrote: Tue May 31, 11:01:00 AM

I usually enjoy books by Meg Cabot for a light, fun read, so I have been looking forward to having a chance to read Abandon. In the past I've found that I didn't like some of her main characters either, but I guess I'll have to wait till I've read this one to see whether or not I agree with you about Pierce. Nice review!

Jenny wrote: Wed Jun 01, 12:56:00 AM

Oh, no. If you hate Twilight I might not like this one. Sigh. I already bought it. I certainly hope I like it.

kaye (paper reader) wrote: Thu Jun 02, 08:35:00 PM

@Kara: I really enjoyed THE GODDESS TEST and I think ABANDON had a lot of potential but the storytelling and the writing just weren't cohesive enough for me. I'll look forward to what you have to say about it.

@Natalie: This is the first book by her and it really doesn't endear me to read others, although I thought I'd give The Princess Diaries series a shot.

@Jenny: I'm rather intrigued to see how you feel about it.

Wendy Darling wrote: Thu Jun 09, 08:11:00 PM

Thanks for the thoughtful review. It's always a shame when the book doesn't live up to its beautiful cover.

kaye (paper reader) wrote: Thu Jun 09, 11:57:00 PM

@Wendy: The cover is gorgeous, isn't it? And the design flows well throughout the book, too.

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