Friday, February 15, 2013

Book review: Shine

Shine by Lauren Myracle

Description from Goodreads (below) can be found here along with other reviews. Linking up with Blonde... Undercover Blonde for Book Club Friday.

When her best guy friend falls victim to a vicious hate crime, sixteen-year-old Cat sets out to discover who in her small town did it. Richly atmospheric, this daring mystery mines the secrets of a tightly knit Southern community and examines the strength of will it takes to go against everyone you know in the name of justice.

Against a backdrop of poverty, clannishness, drugs, and intolerance, Myracle has crafted a harrowing coming-of-age tale couched in a deeply intelligent mystery. Smart, fearless, and compassionate, this is an unforgettable work from a beloved author.

Shine deals with some very serious subjects: hate crimes, sexual abuse, substance abuse and more. Although it is a Young Adult novel, I can't recommend it to younger audiences without stressing the need for some conversations to happen. If my little sister decides to read it -- which I'm not saying you shouldn't, Anna, if you're reading -- I would recommend my mom check in with her now and then. Because Shine gets a little dark.

Cat is an awesome character. She has spent the last few years hiding her personality, her life, from people who once were her friends. But when her former BFF Patrick is attacked, Cat comes out of hiding and decides to find the culprit, risking her own safety in the process.

A lot of books seem to lack character development -- they skate by on awesome plots alone. This is not one of those books. I love when Cat realizes she can be fierce, she can stand up for herself. And I love that the way she views everyone around her shifts through the course of the book.

This book has really dynamic, powerful characters. I think it will stick with me for a while. There are some light moments here and there, but overall it is a very dark book. Know that going in.

There's also, obviously, a really strong hook in the plot. Cat is on a mission. I figured out the shocker before I was supposed to, I think. But I still read constantly to find out how it would all go down.

I gave it four stars. And I'll be thinking about it a lot for a long time.

Also, I really enjoyed the audio version of this one. It was read really well. Good one for any fellow audio-ers out there. :)

Have any of you read Shine? What did you think? Be careful of spoilers in the comments, please. :)


Katie said...

I love books like this that stick with you for a while-- even if they are somewhat darker. I also love a good mystery. Adding this one to my goodreads list!

Jordan said...

I added this to my "to-read" shelf! Thank you for sharing :)

jennie said...

This one sounds like it's an intense but solid read. I'm adding to my list! :)

Shoshanah said...

I've read a few reviews on this, but yours seem to make the biggest impression on me. I definitely think this is one I'd enjoy.


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