I received this book for free from The Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Broken by CJ Lyons
Published by Sourcebooks Fire on November 5th 2013
Genres: Contemporary, Mystery/Thriller, Young Adult
Source: The Publisher
Buy on Amazon
New York Times bestselling author CJ Lyons makes her YA debut with a fast-paced thriller sure to keep readers guessing to the very last page
The only thing fifteen-year-old Scarlet Killian has ever wanted is a chance at a normal life. Diagnosed with a rare and untreatable heart condition, she has never taken the school bus. Or giggled with friends during lunch. Or spied on a crush out of the corner of her eye. So when her parents offer her three days to prove she can survive high school, Scarlet knows her time is now... or never. Scarlet can feel her heart beating out of control with every slammed locker and every sideways glance in the hallway. But this high school is far from normal. And finding out the truth might just kill Scarlet before her heart does.
I was beside myself when I got the approval for Broken and then asked to post for the tour. I was on a contemporary kick and knowing that there was a mystery thrown in was what sold me on it. That, but that this book was inspired by her niece, a brave, sweet girl who actually has the heart condition that our protagonist has. Even though I worked in the medical field for years, I had never heard of this condition before, even in school. So, you could say my inner nerd was screaming for a fix and was loving the medical jargon.
I loved how Broken was written. All the events happen within 5 days, each day being more or less a chapter. It was pretty fast paced– but I was never reeling from all the information and drama. And there is drama. Since I already introduced you to my inner nerd, I will say I was happy to understand a lot of what was going on medical wise. This may have had me at a slight disadvantage as well, because I have seen more than one case of another medical condition that presents itself, so I saw the signs early on. Still, she did a fantastic job with the subtle clues, hints and series of events to keep me guessing and biting my nails anxiously.
Scarlet is such a brave girl. I loved how she didn’t feel sorry for herself, not once. She wanted to be normal. Live a normal life. All she has ever know is hospitals and bed rest. I can see her determination to want to live, not just survive. Yet, through all that, she is a little spit fire too. What teenager isn’t right? Her rebelliousness was different from your typical teen, but still. She attached herself to a few fellow students and is all in when it comes to their well-being. She is there for them, even though she doesn’t know exactly how. The awkward, REAL feelings about the boys were so cute and kind of funny. Like I said, I kind of saw the direction the story was headed but there were a few twist I was thrown by.
So, you have a girl who has never attended school before, is sick and could pretty much die at any minute, never had friends but instead of a warm welcome from her peers, she was bullied severely. Some of the… connections/ties are kind of wrapped in together in the end…But that is no excuse. I was really appalled at how she was treated. These other kids are connected and had history, almost their own little war going on. Which is “normal”, and pretty high school. But what they did to Scarlet just wasn’t right. Not saying any is but damn. Kids are just mean. Plain and simple. THAT, was my biggest peeve in the book. I just felt like the other kids’ reactions to her were extreme.
I was really happy with the way the strong ended. I am a huge believer that an ending can make or break a book. It was a strong, realistic ending. Open ended enough to draw your own conclusions on her life but wrapped up enough to be content. VERY happy for Scarlet and her friends.
Overall- I loved it. My inner nerd was happy. Broken was such a heartbreaking yet hopefully story about a brave girl trying to LIVE. I highly recommend this one.
Tonyalee is an avid reader, gym junkie, coffee addicted workaholic, and blogger. Be sure to follow on Twitter & Instagram for random shenanigans.