Tuesday, June 16, 2015

[Review] Abandon by Meg Cabot

Abandon by Meg Cabot

Rating: 3 stars
Series: Abandon #1
Release Date: April 2011

Goodreads synopsis: 

New from #1 New York Times bestselling author Meg Cabot, a dark, fantastical story about this world . . . and the underworld.

Though she tries returning to the life she knew before the accident, Pierce can't help but feel at once a part of this world, and apart from it. Yet she's never alone . . . because someone is always watching her. Escape from the realm of the dead is impossible when someone there wants you back.

But now she's moved to a new town. Maybe at her new school, she can start fresh. Maybe she can stop feeling so afraid.

Only she can't. Because even here, he finds her. That's how desperately he wants her back. She knows he's no guardian angel, and his dark world isn't exactly heaven, yet she can't stay away . . . especially since he always appears when she least expects it, but exactly when she needs him most.

But if she lets herself fall any further, she may just find herself back in the one place she most fears: the Underworld.

Being a longtime Meg Cabot fan, and also fascinated by a retelling of the myth of Persephone, I was pretty hopeful for this book. After reading it... I was somewhat disappointed. Time to explain why.

The myth within the myth, as I would say, was what I liked best about Abandon. The whole history behind Pierce's 'cursed necklace' and intertwining it with the French Revolution and other time periods, as well as the life of Hades's - well John Hayden in this novel, from normal mortal man to Lord Death, was a twist. Furies secretly being people you know reminded me of Percy Jackson's Mrs. Dodds, but hey, you really can't trust anyone anymore when you're Death's bride. 

Speaking of Death's bride, Pierce Oliviera - I've never met a more oblivious character. Not everyone is a Greek mythology enthusiast, understandably, but if you die once then awaken in a weird place and finally come back alive with a strange necklace, I'm sure you'd look into it. Or at least have a general knowledge of myths. This quote killed me - "All those strange names and people being hit with arrows in the Achilles heel and girls being swept down into the Underworld. It was complicated and weird and had nothing to do with reality." But whatever she went through wasn't complicated and weird and was definitely realistic, sure. 

Another negative was her overall blandness. I fail to see what exactly John Hayden sees in her, and I'm not being superficial or anything. It's great that she's unfailingly nice and thinks of others - but that's all there seems to be. What is there about her that makes Lord Death go crazy? Maybe it'll show up in the sequel. 

Moving onto John Hayden... Well the first thought when I found out his name was John was - Really? That's some name for a retelling of Hades and Persephone. I almost thought it was a pseudonym. But last name Hayden - Hades, get it? Names aside, for a god of death, he's surprisingly immature. He gets upset whenever Pierce spurns his advances and really goes out of his way to make sure she's safe. Nearly killing some guys or breaking parts of a cemetery is the way to go about things. Makes me wonder why he goes to such lengths for a plain Jane girl who really doesn't seem that special. 

Again, maybe we'll find out in the sequel, Underworld. Overall, the characters of Abandon were what made me lose interest, for being either too emotional or too bland, but hey, if you overlook that for a decent take on a Greek myth, it isn't that bad. 

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