Perfect Ruin by Lauren DeStefano
Release Date - October 1, 2013
Publisher Website - Simon and Schuster
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages - 356 pages
My Rating - 5/5
**obtained for review from publisher**
Here is the Goodreads synopsis
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.Internment is a perfect place to live, as long as you don't look too closely. A Utopian society that reveals itself to be built on secrets, and half truths. A captivating and page turning story that inspires you to follow your dreams, even if they seem risky.
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.
A feeling of claustrophobia lends itself easily while you're reading this book. Internment is small. It feels even small as you're reading and the city feels like it's tightening around you. The fact that it's forbidden to leave made me, as a reader, stir crazy. Living there would be worse. The city itself leaps off the pages, and by the end you feel that you've fully immersed yourself in every aspect.
Lauren's writing floats like the clouds that surround the city. It's soft, lyrical, and it's easy to immerse yourself in it. It's some of the best writing I've come across and I will happily read anything she writes next. I found that I could recognize her voice. This writing is immediately recognizable as the author of the Chemical Garden trilogy, but still different enough to be appropriate for this story. She captures the essence and tone of the story with her writing, and it makes the novels that much deeper.
Morgan is dreamer. She dreams of life beyond her stars and clouds. On Internment, however, this behaviour is considered dangerous. She came alive for me. Lauren made sure that we know her completely. We understand what makes her Morgan, and I found that I loved every aspect of her character. She was instantly relatable, and everything she questions, wants, hopes for is something that the reader will ache to give her.
Lex, Morgan's brother, is a jumper. His attempt at finding something more left him blind, and because he unable to, he 'sees' things differently. His bond with Morgan is brilliant. I felt the sibling connection, and the complexity of loving someone that can exasperate you like nobody else can. Their relationship is one of the most well crafted in the novel, and seemed effortless to incorporate into the story.
The romance is rather intriguing. Lauren manages to create these layered worlds, characters, and puts these little details into them that make the richer. The way marriage works on Internment is just one of these little details. Basil, Morgan's betrothed, is kind, caring, patient. He's everything that someone like Morgan could need and want. He is perfect suited to her because when it counts he supports her. I am just not sure they challenge each other. There is a slight hint of a potential complication in their relationship, and I am curious to see if anything will come of it.
This novel surprised me in the most thrilling way. Things that I expected to not happen until future novels in the series were delivered before the final pages of this installment. It's taken places that left me wanting to grab the second novel immediately. It's pacing is much faster than I expected and the pages raced by even as I savored every word.
A novel that is, dare I say it, better than her previous trilogy. Surprising, wondrous, and filled with both despair and breathtaking hope. Lauren DeStefano has cemented herself as not only a fantastic writer, but a brilliant storyteller as well.