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Review: Broken (A. E. Rought)

The Deets:
Reading level: YA
Pages: 384
Publisher: January 8th 2013 by Strange Chemistry
ISBN: 9781908844316
Source: eARC from Netgalley

BrokenImagine a modern spin on Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein where a young couple’s undying love and the grief of a father pushed beyond sanity could spell the destruction of them all.

A string of suspicious deaths near a small Michigan town ends with a fall that claims the life of Emma Gentry's boyfriend, Daniel. Emma is broken, a hollow shell mechanically moving through her days. She and Daniel had been made for each other, complete only when they were together. Now she restlessly wanders the town in the late Fall gloom, haunting the cemetery and its white-marbled tombs, feeling Daniel everywhere, his spectre in the moonlight and the fog.

When she encounters newcomer Alex Franks, only son of a renowned widowed surgeon, she's intrigued despite herself. He's an enigma, melting into shadows, preferring to keep to himself. But he is as drawn to her as she is to him. He is strangely... familiar. From the way he knows how to open her locker when it sticks, to the nickname she shared only with Daniel, even his hazel eyes with brown flecks are just like Daniel's.

The closer they become, though, the more something inside her screams there's something very wrong with Alex Franks. And when Emma stumbles across a grotesque and terrifying menagerie of mangled but living animals within the walls of the Franks' estate, creatures she surely knows must have died from their injuries, she knows.


 This was one part Frankenstein and one part Romeo and Juliet. I fully expected to be slightly creeped out by one or more characters in the book, but what I didn't expect was such a hot and steamy romance.

There are many interesting characters in Broken. Emma is a great depiction of a broken heart. He desire to try to heal from the loss of her true love--but inability to do so-- is both believable and heartbreaking. I thought the author shared Emma's despair in an almost poetic way. The supporting characters are also pretty great. Josh is as vile as they come. At first you think he's just jealous, but then you realize there is a lot more driving that jealousy. Bree is hilarious. She's a typical flighty teenager, but the perfect counterpart to Emma's highly depressed character. We also can't forget that Emma and Alex are hot. Super, super hot. It is instant sparks (both literally and figuratively) the moment the meet. I should have been creeped out by the fact that Alex is a "made man" but it didn't bother me. He felt real, even if it was very clear that he was the modern Frankenstein. He was this mysterious, brooding shadow constantly watching over Emma, and he had me turning every page as quickly as I could.

If you couldn't already tell that this is a modern twist on an old classic, I'm going to reiterate that point now. This is Frankenstein.... sort of. The obvious key elements of the story are there, except concerning the monster himself. I would hardly consider Alex a monster. You'll see how that twist plays out in Broken. If you are familiar with the original horror tale, you'll enjoy seeing the new angle Broken brings. I also enjoyed the modern aspect of science lending a hand to the twisted Dr. Franks' (Frankenstein) creation.


  1. I didn't think romance would play such a big part in this! But it does sound like it would be a fun book for when I'm in the mood for something different.

  2. The romance factor was huge! not so much for the "monster" element.


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Product Details

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Paperback: 192 pages
Publisher: Square Fish (August 21, 2007)
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Source: My personal book

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