Perfect Ruin by Lauren DeStefano
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Book for Young Readers
Release Date: October 1, 2013
On Internment, the floating island in the clouds where 16-year-old Morgan Stockhour lives, getting too close to the edge can lead to madness. Even though Morgan's older brother, Lex, was a Jumper, Morgan vows never to end up like him. She tries her best not to mind that her life is orderly and boring, and if she ever wonders about the ground, and why it is forbidden, she takes solace in best friend Pen and her betrothed, Basil.This is the first time I've read any of Lauren DeStefano's books. And boy was I glad that this kicked things off. I plan on reading her Chemical Garden Trilogy someday, but for now, let's go into my review of this fabulous book.
Then a murder, the first in a generation, rocks the city. With whispers swirling and fear on the wind, Morgan can no longer stop herself from investigating, especially when she meets Judas. He is the boy being blamed for the murder — betrothed to the victim — but Morgan is convinced of his innocence. Secrets lay at the heart of Internment, but nothing can prepare Morgan for what she will find — or who she will lose.
Let's start with the cover. It has got to be one of my favorite book covers of all time. Not only is it perfect and pretty and eye-catching, the inside is just as beautiful. And I don't just mean her writing and her words. I mean, just look at this:
But moving on. The concept was what originally drew me to the book. It's what made me request an ARC. It's new and fresh. It's interesting. I knew right away that it would be a book that I would enjoy as long as it was pulled off right. And it was. Some twists were easy to spot and guess, but it didn't detract much. I enjoyed the originality mixed with dystopian themes and ideas.
Secondly, Lauren't writing BLEW ME AWAY. It is fantastic. She really has a way with words, and I'm so jealous. She can weave sentences together in such a beautiful way. There were so many quotes that I wanted to remember forever. There's a flow that is hard to break when you read her writing. That's what I loved most about this book, to be honest. The writing just captivates me, and it allowed me to enjoy the book in a different way.
I also enjoyed the characters. There was a darkness to each of them, but at the same time, they were all so amazing. They all have to deal with so much, each handling their own problems, and then they all come together at the end to deal with a bigger issue. And they're all so unique. I know I say that about book characters a LOT, but it's true! I especially loved Pen, Basil, and Alice. But all of the characters were interesting. They had different perspectives, and it was cool to see them come together and understand one another better by the end.
However, there were a few things that kept this from being extremely amazing. The first is that it starts off pretty slowly. In fact, a large portion of the book was slow. It didn't necessarily feel that way while I was reading because Lauren's writing is so good, but as I thought back, I realized this. There's a lot that has to be set up and explained, so I guess having a slow beginning is better than a quick info-dump. It also allowed us to get to understand and know the characters more. So it wasn't bad, per say, but.
Secondly, a lot of my questions were never really answered. The main one was what was going on with Pen? Was there really something that was bothering her? If so, what was it? Or even how was Morgan able to take [SPOILERS] her parents' deaths so...easily? It's not that she wasn't upset, but she just seemed okay with it, in my opinion.[END SPOILERS]
Lastly, back to some aspects of the book that I liked, I love how it made me think about society. I think that most dystopian books do this, and Perfect Ruin is no different. There can't ever be a perfect society, but it's interesting to see how the governments in all of these books interpret what perfection should be like.
All in all, I thought this was fantastic and lovely. I wish I could just read the rest of the series already. I also wish I had enough money to buy a finished copy. If you're a fan of pretty writing, read Perfect Ruin. You won't be disappointed.