Book Review: ‘Ruined’ by Paula Morris

Book Title: Ruined

Author: Paula Morris

Genre: YA Fiction / Paranormal

Summary: While her father is away for a year, Rebecca is sent to New Orleans to stay with family friends. The girls at her new school want little to do with her and the only person who seems remotely friendly is the very gorgeous Anton. It is not until one night in the graveyard that Rebecca meets Lisette and the two become friends, but with the friendship comes the unravelling of many secrets … and a family curse.

Favourite Scene: When the secrets about Rebecca’s past are revealed … I’m fairly sure Morris didn’t intend for it to be comical, but I was in hysterics.

Favourite Character: The cat.

Review: I read this book in a single sitting, not because I was enamoured with the characters but because I was hoping it would get better. The setting and the author’s knowledge of New Orleans is commendable – some of the descriptions of New Orleans had me ready to book a ticket there right now, and it remains on my “to go” list partly as a result of the ‘nooks and crannies’ detailed in this novel.

The story itself was … disappointing. While the idea behind the characters and plot were interesting, the overall execution was quite frustrating. Aside from being ‘a ghost story’, elements of the paranormal and the occult are sidelined for want of a love story. And that love story is pretty predictable and boring, to tell the truth. Remembering that this is a paranormal novel, there were aspects that were simply too far-fetched. In a paranormal setting I’ll accept most things with an open mind, but when [SPOILER ALERT] Rebecca’s past is revealed to her and “a friend in the CIA” assisted with changing her birth certificate (or some such nonsense), I couldn’t help but laugh. I mean, seriously?

Maybe I’m getting too old for YA fiction …

11 comments on “Book Review: ‘Ruined’ by Paula Morris

  1. You guys are C-R-A-Z-Y. Seriously you wouldn’t know a good book even if it hit you on the head. I personally think ruined was a fantastic book and I really want to read unbroken. Though, I do agree the plot was all over the place but that’s what made it awesome, it forced you to think and arrange the clues to figure it out. What’s the beauty of a book if you can’t use clues to figure out the mystery before the characters. Like come on. By the way, Lisette was probably the best character

  2. I totally agree with your whole book review. I just finished Ruined, and thought Rebecca had about as much personality as a saltine cracker. I also really liked Marilyn the cat 🙂

  3. You’re not the only one. I do seriously believe that the characters and plot were good — I like the idea of them. However, how those ideas were executed leaves something to be desired.

    • Thanks for your input. Yes, there was definitely something lacking in the execution! 🙂 I wonder if I needed more complexity in the plot and characters to give it more depth and less of a predictable (and neat and tidy) outcome?

  4. NO! You are NEVER too old for YA fiction! … At least, not for GOOD YA fiction. 🙂

    This was an awesome little review. I think the term “the very gorgeous Anton” was what first tipped me off to the fact that you had less than favourable opinions of the book. That, and the fact that your favourite character was a cat.

    … Was it a special cat, at least? 😉

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