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 …