Middle school students have reading interests that run the gamut from Diary of a Wimpy Kid to Twilight. Sometimes as a parent it is hard to know what is age appropriate for your child. Through this blog, I will try to help parents make informed decisions about what is available in our library. I am hoping that this blog will be a resource for our parents, and that we can all work together to make our students life-long readers!

Monday, April 28, 2014

Perfect Ruin

Perfect Ruin
by Lauren DeStefano
From the publisher:"On Internment, the floating island in the clouds where 16-year-old Morgan Stockhour lives, getting too close to the edge can lead to madness. Even though Morgan's older brother, Lex, was a Jumper, Morgan vows never to end up like him. She tries her best not to mind that her life is orderly and boring, and if she ever wonders about the ground, and why it is forbidden, she takes solace in best friend Pen and her betrothed, Basil.

Then a murder, the first in a generation, rocks the city. With whispers swirling and fear on the wind, Morgan can no longer stop herself from investigating, especially when she meets Judas. He is the boy being blamed for the murder — betrothed to the victim — but Morgan is convinced of his innocence. Secrets lay at the heart of Internment, but nothing can prepare Morgan for what she will find — or who she will lose."

This is a very unique take on the YA dystopian genre. The imagination that came up with it is pretty amazing. For the most part I liked the characters (although I never really trusted any of the side characters) and I thought the plot was interesting and at times intense. Yet for some reason it just didn't grab me. I liked it, but I didn't think it was earth-shattering. It started out pretty slowly and took me a long time to get into it, and then at the end it had some really weird twists that I had a hard time buying into. But all in all it was pretty enjoyable. I doubt I will read a sequel, although I am a little intrigued as to what will happen to the characters in the next book. Maybe I will skim a sequel :) .
I do believe teenagers will really like this book, and a lot of other adults have loved it as well, so give it a try.

Areas of concern:
I don't remember much bad language at all. There is a very sweet and tender romance that involves kissing. The children of Internment are betrothed at birth, and there is some discussion of girls starting to take a pill to prevent pregnancy at a certain age because no one can have children without permission.

Suggested Ages:
Publisher's Weekly - Ages 12+
School Library Journal - Grades 7+

*This author has written another series (The Chemical Garden trilogy) that I don't have in my library because all the reviews said ages 14+ or 9th grade and up due to mature content, but this one is really very appropriate for middle school.

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