Saturday, 18 September 2010

Review: Entangled - Cat Clarke

Published: January 6th 2011, Quercus Publishing

Pages: 372 pages, paperback

Acquired: Won via a contest on Cat’s blog (Thanks again Cat!)

Summary (from Goodreads):The same questions whirl round and round in my head: What does he want from me? How could I have let this happen? AM I GOING TO DIE?

17-year-old Grace wakes up in a white room, with table, pens and paper - and no clue how she got here.

As Grace pours her tangled life onto the page, she is forced to remember everything she's tried to forget. There's falling hopelessly in love with the gorgeous Nat, and the unravelling of her relationship with her best friend Sal. But there's something missing. As hard as she's trying to remember, is there something she just can't see?

Grace must face the most important question of all. Why is she here?

A story of dark secrets, intense friendship and electrifying attraction.’

My review: I met Cat Clarke in a coffee shop in London earlier this year when a few of us UK bloggers met up. From our chit chat I remember that she loves cheese and Ellie Goulding. Upon discovering this I knew she must be a good person. But I’m not here to talk about whether Cat is a good person, based on her dietary and music preferences, I’m here to talk about whether she is a good writer or not.

In short, she is a bloody good one.

Entangled is, to put it bluntly, an absolutely cracking novel. If I’d received the ARC in the post and hadn’t ever heard of or met Cat, I still would have attacked it as excitedly as I did a couple of months ago when I first read it. The synopsis is spot on and doesn’t at all lead you in a direction that the book never goes in (pet peeve of mine) and, I know it’s completely shallow and superficial but the ARC cover is pink. Yay for pink, yay for girls.

I would go ahead and try and summarise the book for you now but, to be honest, I definitely can’t do any better than the summary on the back cover or on Goodreads so I won’t attempt it. It tells you everything you need to know. I first read Entangled the day I received it, maybe a month or two ago and I decided to leave the review for a few weeks, to see if I still loved it as much as I did when I first finished reading it. I think now I may love it even more.

Cat’s writing style is absolutely beautiful, tugging at my heart strings in one moment and making me laugh out loud (to the point where my boyfriend gave me strange looks and relocated me to the bedroom) the next moment. Grace’s voice is perfect, too. I said this before in my review of Della Says: OMG! but voice is really important to me, especially in young adult fiction. I want to feel as though the protagonist is my best friend, I want her to speak as though me and my friends would and Grace does just that.

‘...I think it’s too early for me to have that syndrome...what’s it called? Where a hostage starts to identify with her captor, falls in love with him, and then joins him on his evil kidnapping/killing/whatever spree. All I’m trying to say is that an impartial observer would think he’s hot as – and I would have to agree.’

See? Funny! It was great to have a bit of humour in there, especially as the subject matter was so dark. It definitely stopped the novel becoming too caught up in its own seriousness. Though it is serious when it needs to be.

Ethan’s great too. Completely gorgeous, perfectly developed, I adored him. He’s cold and clinical one moment and the next, well, not quite so cold and clinical, as you’ll see. Grace’s stream of consciousness about him is such a joy to read – she goes from hating him to obsessing over him in a second and, although I’ve never been in that situation myself, it seemed completely realistic to me.

Oh, also, I definitely have to point out how well Cat writes about Grace’s self harming. When I compare the delicate and sensitive way those scenes come across, as opposed to the terrible, terrible writing in Scarred (but more on that absolute train wreck later), it was great. Well, maybe great’s not the right word as it’s self harm, not a plate of warm cookies but those scenes were really, really well written.

It’s just brilliant. It really is and I really can’t wait for some other reviews to go up so I can see what everyone else thought. I’ll definitely be getting a finished copy in January and you all should too! As much as I love the pink cover, I have got to have a closer look at the gorgeous girl’s hair – that is definitely the colour mine’s supposed to go when I dye it this weekend. Nervous? Yes, yes I am. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Oh God, I almost forgot. The ending! Ridiculously amazing! Sorry, any spark of literacy I have has flown out of the window with this review. I’m just too excited about this one. Perhaps, finally, a book this year has surpassed The Sky is Everywhere?

First line: ‘I met Ethan the night I was planning to kill myself.’

Read if you liked...: The Sky is Everywhere – Jandy Nelson. Not because they’re similar books, just because it’s the only other book this year that I’ve loved this much.

Rating:
Plot: 5/5
Writing: 5/5
Characters: 4/5 (because I wanted to punch Sal)
Cover: 5/5
Total: 19/20 (A+)

So you can find Cat's blog here and any Twitter fiends can follow her at @cat_clarke.

Also, I'm sorry I haven't been about much this week but since Tuesday I've been BEDRIDDEN with a cold. Yes, I know, a cold. It's practically man flu... but lady flu. Anyway, I'm fixed now. Yay.

10 comments:

  1. I am so glad that someone else didn't like Scarred. I couldn't stand that book and everyone gives it rave reviews.

    I cannot wait to read Entangled!!

    (and good luck with the hair dye!) (and glad you're feeling better!)

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  2. Wow, I can tell that you adore the book. First, the author loves cheese and Ellie Goulding? Me too. so that's a plus! And the book sounds perfect, really good. Glad that you liked it.

    Good luck with the hair! :)

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  3. Sounds awesome! Voice is something really important to me as well, I need to be able to relate to the character (unlikecoughbellacough). Looking forward to reading this now, thanks! And glad that you've made a recovery :P.

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  4. Wow, this sounds fantastic! You've made me more excited to read this book that's for sure. :)

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  5. Isn't just so good when you find a book you truly love and you know you'll keep reading again and again! Sometimes I deconstruct a book so much, that it loses all the fun of reading it. Its good to read a book that you get so caught up that it picks you up and runs away with you!

    Can't wait to read this one!

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  6. Such a great cover. You gave very high scores too. I have trouble, personally, with dark and humour, unless it's dark humour - um, if you see what I mean. But you make this sound very well done.

    Thanks for the heads-up.

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  7. Sounds interesting the way it all starts.
    will keep an eye out for it :D

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  8. I am also super excited about this book. It's been on my TBR pile for a while now so I'm counting the days for this one to be released! Fantastic review as always - it makes me want to read this one more than ever :)

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  9. Sounds good. Good to know the writing is lovely as well :)

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Thank you kindly for the comment, you sweet thing.