Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Synopsis: Set in the sleepy Connecticut town of Swoon, Malkin's novel is narrated by Dice (short for Candice). Dice is a New York native with family roots in Swoon. She quickly integrates herself via her cousin, Pen (short for Penelope). But after her cousin suffers a bump on the noggin after falling of an Ash tree, the slightly psychic Dice begins to sense another presence in her barbie doll cousin. Soon Pen is acting on impulses she never had and doing wanton and violent things as though they were the most normal thing in the world. Dice manages to manifest the presence in Pen and learns that he is a ghost who was unjustly hanged in the 1600's by a lynch mob after he was framed for his beloveds murder. Thus begins an interesting love triangle, which Dice falling for Sinclair (referred to as Sin from there on out...aptly), who is stuck in Pen. But when Dice manages to separate Sin from Pen, the residents of Swoon start spiralling out of control and Dice as at a loss of what to do...

Commentary: I wanted to like this book. I really did. But first I must give a warning, even though this book is listed as Young Adult, there is excessive casual drug use (even crystal and coke are referred to by the main character, and not in a negative sense), gratuitous sex references and acts (the oddest being an orgasmic spanking session taking place in a corn maze with 7-year-olds in presence), and entirely irresponsible behavior by all characters. Now I'm not Conservative. I've read and enjoyed books with explicit sex in them. However, this book was meant for teenagers. The drug use bothered me the most, though.

Ignoring all that, the author seemed to have tried to use dialogue that she thinks youngsters nowadays use, but it just ended sounding like my grandma saying "Fashizzle," extremely awkward and out of place. And often the author uses obscure words that scream of improper thesaurus use. For example: "He stroked my cochlea..." First of all...what teenager knows what that is? Second of all...it's a inner-ear tube, I don't wanna know the logistics of someone stroking the inside of your ear.

In all fairness, I did want to continue reading this book. It was engaging and at moments, decent. But at least half of the time I was just incredulous that parts of this book made it through an editor, and managed to get categorize and sold to young adults.


  1. Lauren said...
    Very interesting review! I'd heard about Swoon and figured I'd read it, but your review makes it sound very different from what I'd expected. I've got mixed feelings about it, but I'm still intrigued and will check it out!
    Britt said...
    I don't regret reading it. But it was just kind of...odd. And I would definitely not encourage teens to read it.

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