Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Don't Look Back - Jennifer L. Armentrout

Date finished: 26 July 2014
Rating: 5*

Well, Armentrout, you've done it again.

It seems that an oncoming trend in the Young Adult Fiction genre seems to be the topic of amnesia. It's a fascinating concept, really, but it honestly takes a strong imagination and an incredibly talented writer to be able to pull off just the right amount of suspense, confusion and deeply intriguing mystery when trying to write from the perspective of a person who knows just as much as the reader. And if anything is a fraction of a unit off, it fails. Often.

But somehow, Armentrout has pulled off yet another phenomenal novel that simultaneously goes along with a new trend and totally defies it because it is that much better than anything else of the same genre that is currently on the shelves. Don't Look Back was absolutely breathtaking, and as with all of her other novels that I've read, I could not bear to put it down. Even eating and sleeping and studying for the looming exams seemed to be silly things of little worth when I was tangled up in the story.

Armentrout's writing is flawless. Her characters are so real I feel like I could run into them on the street, and that's not just the partially psychotic fangirl part of me dreaming of meeting them in real life. Her knack for suspense and mystery had me second- and third- and fourth-guessing all my predictions for the outcome of the novel, and even then I still never expected what would happen in the last fifteen pages. By the time I'd finished reading, I felt like I'd been dragged onto an emotional roller coaster that twisted and spun until I was so exhilarated that I felt a bit sick at the end, but still screeched: "Again, again!" And I'm extremely annoyed about that because I'm physically fighting myself not to pick up the damn book and read it all over again - I still have loads of work to do before I can just reread books willy-nilly.

I highly recommend 'Don't Look Back'. I was beginning to lose hope in the Teen/Young Adult Fiction of this generation (come now, all those ripoffs of Twilight are getting really old, and so are most of the supernatural stories that all seem the same in essence) and then I went through a deep, dark phase where I was stuck in Exclusive Books trying to find at least ONE recent fictional adult book that didn't have some sort of arrogant narrator or soppy, disgusting love affair (hardly any luck, despite over three excursions to different branches). This book was a saving grace, although I doubt anything I read now for the next few months will be able to measure up to it.

P.S. Forgive me, I'm trying to upload this from my iPad because my laptop's battery is dead. I apologize for any errors... I'll edit this as soon as my exams are over.

P.P.S. Look! I finally finished a book AND then reviewed it somewhat professionally! Hopefully this marks the end of my Dark Phase and not the beginning of another one. Stay posted for the Nerd List tomorrow: THIS TIME I WILL NOT FORGET I PROMISE.

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