Thursday 17 January 2013

GoodRead - Pure

When Ben from Headline (hi Ben!) asked if I had heard of Pure and its sequel (out on Valentine's Day, FYI)  by Julianna Baggott, I was honest: no, I hadn't. When he asked if I wanted to read both of them, I said yes with no real idea of what the books were about (probably a wise decision) but when I agreed, I did very little information hunting and discovered the following:

1. This book has received a lot of praise
2. This book was described as dystopian/post-apocalyptic read
3. It had the line "If you liked The Hunger Games, you'll love Pure" (A statement I dislike - but we'll talk about why on a later date, shall we?)
4. When I got the ARCs of both books, my other half called it "The Naked Book" as there was NOTHING on the cover. It was a blank white cover.

After the dropping of the Detonations, the world is split into two groups of people: the Pures and the Wretches. The Pures, who live inside the Dome, safe from the effects of the Detonations. And the Wretches, who felt the effects of the Dentonations and were fused into whatever was closest to them; wherever that was a doll, birds, a handheld fans, the pavement, other people (friends, strangers, your children), the list goes on...

Pressia lives outside the Dome, a Wretch with a doll head instead of a hand, trying to survive. Partridge, a Pure inside the Dome, knows he's not as perfect as the other Pures. And when Partridge's father says something about his mother, Partridge and Pressia's lives are thrown together in a way that no one, not even they, could imagine.

I am going to state this now and will say it again at the end of the review: Pure is the most frightening post-apocalyptic read I have read in a very long time, if not EVER!

I feel I should explain this statement. In most, if not all the dystopian novels I read, I want there to be a grain of truth. A feeling that what the book is suggesting COULD happen if we're not careful. This is why, I think, The Hunger Games trilogy, the Matched trilogy, DivergentChaos WalkingUnder the Never Sky trilogy and the Delirium trilogy have hit a nerve with us readers. It could happen if we're not careful. But Pure is the most frightening as we're almost there. It's not years in the future, but it's frighteningly close to us. The idea that the atom bomb having side effects (and yet, how many countries have their own nuclear weapons?) is terrifying so the ideas the author put forward aren't as implausible as you first think...

This book is very dark, very morbid and violent (though Julianna never glamorised the violence. She merely states it). This is not a book for the faint-hearted. You can't go into this, thinking it's a light read. If you do, I give you a matter of two or three pages before you realise your mistake.

The writing caught me up and, while there were times I wondered why I was reading this as it was so dark, I kept me turning pages, desperate for more.

There are faults (don't I always?). I might be alone with this but it took a while to connect to the characters. I did by the end of the book (hence me going "WHERE DID I PUT THE SEQUEL?!") but for a while, I didn't connect with the leads. But I think the author did this on purpose. This isn't a book you can jump straight into. You have to invest in this book.

The second thing is that this book is SO morbid. It is very morbid and dark. This will turn some of you guys off, I know this hence why I am telling you. At times, I was wondering why I was reading this dark, when the tiny moments of happiness and joy last mere pages. But again, I think the author did this on purpose. In a world that she is writing, a world that is so harsh and cruel, when you discover a tiny moment of beauty, you cling to it with everything you have because you don't know if you're going to have another moment like this...

As I have said earlier, this book is the most frightening post-apocalyptic novel I think I have ever read (and the fact that the film rights to Pure have been bought and will produced by one of the lead producers of the Twilight Saga just boggles my brain as to HOW they are going to bring it to the big screen). I do have EVERY intention to read the sequel, Fuse, but am scared to at the same time... Wish me luck!

1 comment:

  1. I've heard great things about this book.
    Thank you for being honest about struggling to get in to this book. Reading that will make me persevere with it if I experience similar difficulties.