- Reading level: Young Adult
- Hardcover: 384 pages
- Publisher: Simon Pulse (August 30, 2011)
- ISBN-10: 1442422246
- Source: ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
It’s winter break in Ascension, Maine. The snow is falling and everything looks pristine and peaceful. But not all is as it seems...
Between cozy traditions and parties with her friends, Emily loves the holidays. And this year’s even better--the guy she’s been into for months is finally noticing her. But Em knows if she starts things with him, there’s no turning back. Because his girlfriend is Em’s best friend.
On the other side of town, Chase is having problems of his own. The stress of his home life is starting to take its toll, and his social life is unraveling. But that’s nothing compared to what’s really haunting him. Chase has done something cruel...something the perfect guy he pretends to be would never do. And it’s only a matter of time before he’s exposed.
In Ascension, mistakes can be deadly. And three girls—three beautiful, mysterious girls—are here to choose who will pay.
Em and Chase have been chosen.
Eh. There was a lot of hype focused on this book and I feel a bit let down. It was pretty good, don't get me wrong, it just wasn't as great as I hoped it would be. I do love the cover, though. It's gorgeous and fits the book perfectly. However, it should have the other "Furies" featured, not just the main one.
Essentially, Em and Chase are two high school students that have screwed up and have big secrets. Some more extreme than others. Since they've messed up, the Furies have arrived to make them pay. There is this veil of mystery throughout the book that really doesn't get resolved. (i.e. the events in the Prologue never fully get explained) The story is actually two separate stories that alternate. Em has cheated with her best friend's boyfriend, which is a big no-no. Chase has a darker secret, hence his more extreme punishment. As far as the Furies go, the sentencing was pretty fair. But there were some really weird scenes. The one that stands out the most takes place in the woods and involves red paint. Totally bizarre.
I liked the characters well enough. The betrayal of Em was believable, because it was set up well. I even get Chase and his need to stay under the radar AND be popular. But my favorite character was JD. I just loved him! Another total win for "normal" guys in books. Kinda geeky (ok really geeky), average looks, but stellar personality. He was a welcome addition to the book. The others really didn't do much for me. I want to know more about Drea, but she was so minor in the story that it almost seems like she doesn't belong. Same with Sasha. Obviously these two are crucial to the events in the story, and yet they have hardly any face time. I didn't like that.
I also didn't like how readily available alcohol was for these high school students. I really wasn't buying that. I know boundaries have broken down and all, but laws are still intact. Am I really supposed to believe that every under aged character has easy access to hard liquor? I don't think so. I also don't buy the lack of parental involvement. The parents let their kids just roam freely without any concern. Please. That crap does not happen in real life. Am I really to believe that the parents willingly let their kids drive in blizzards without any concern? The whole family dynamic wasn't very believable.
I highly suspect that this will be a series. There were some elements that were not resolved in the end. I"m not too sure where the next book is going to go, however. I know at least one character is going to meet the Furies again, but where Em falls into the plot is a mystery. She claims that she's going to make the Furies pay. (ironic, right?) I guess if there has to be another book, then hopefully Drea will be more prominent. It's another interesting take on mythology. BUT, if anyone says this is a retelling of the Persephone myth, I am going to look at them like they're crazy. The Persephone element was only evident in the last five pages of the book. I would hardly call this a Persephone story, but I guarantee that book #2 takes that turn. It's wide open.