Saturday, April 2, 2011

Shine by Lauren Myracle

Author: Lauren Myracle
Release Date: May 1, 2011
Publisher: Amulet Books
Pages: 376
Genre: YA Fiction
Source: Publisher
Parents: Some adult language is used.

ISBN: 0810984172
Maybe I am a little prejudiced because this is the first book that a publisher sent to me, but I absolutely loved it!

A boy beaten, bound, and left for dead, words of hatred scrawled across his chest...

A girl shrinking from life, enslaved by a shameful secret...

A tight-knit Southern community riddled by poverty, clannishness, drugs, and intolerance...

When Patrick is found near death, strung to the pump of the local gas station, sixteen-year-old Cat emerges from her self-imposed exile to avenge the horrors afflicted on her former best friend. The local sheriff is ready to pin the crime on gay-bashing out-of-towners, but Cat's suspicions lie elsewhere. Despite ominous warnings to 'leave it be', Cat finds the will -- fueled by fury born of an old injustice-- to expose the homegrown hatred that gave rise to Patrick's attack.

Homosexuality, drugs, religion, hatred, and Southern roots. Myracle ties them all in beautifully. Each character is rich with unique personality. The bonds of old friendship are burned deeply into the story in a way that makes the reader ache for the same.

I loved every moment that I picked up this book. From the Southern drawl to the deadly fate of using meth. The author did an amazing job at keeping you caught up in the drama while falling for each character. I was surprised that my favorite one was Robert. The gangly eleven-year-old nuisance was the humor throughout the pain. His odd actions and unfiltered personality were a crack up.

As soon as this book comes out, I think readers will fall as easily as I have.

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