Author: Tabitha Suzuma
Series: Stand Alone
Published: June 2011 by Simon Pulse
Source: Galley Grab
Description: Seventeen-year-old Lochan and sixteen-year-old Maya have always felt more like friends than siblings. Together they have stepped in for their alcoholic, wayward mother to take care of their three younger siblings. As defacto parents to the little ones, Lochan and Maya have had to grow up fast. And the stress of their lives—and the way they understand each other so completely—has also also brought them closer than two siblings would ordinarily be. So close, in fact, that they have fallen in love. Their clandestine romance quickly blooms into deep, desperate love. They know their relationship is wrong and cannot possibly continue. And yet, they cannot stop what feels so incredibly right. As the novel careens toward an explosive and shocking finale, only one thing is certain: a love this devastating has no happy ending.
I Give This ...
First off, don't let the description immediately turn you off this book. I completely agree with the reviewers who agree that this is a powerful book.
I was never really turned off by the fact that the story was about a brother and sister who fall in love. For some who has an obsession with royalty and the middle ages, this didn't really feel all that different, just modern times. From the start, the author does a fabulous job of making you see just how Maya and Lochan view each other. Just the interactions before they fall in love makes me see them differently. In my eyes this was best friends falling in love. And, I could completely see why when you take in to account all they have been through together. They trying to raise a family on their own. They are dealing with things that most normal teens never have to deal with. It brings them closer together. They function as a unit.
Since I could see past the taboo subject of incest, I was really prepared to like this book as much as others. But, I actually had a hard time with Maya's character. I really do think she was deeply in love with Lochan, but she behaved like a teenager with typical hormones at times. She went out with someone else to make Lochan jealous. She refuses to take no for answer. Sometimes I felt like she wasn't giving Lochan a choice in the matter. He may have been in love with her too, but he also wasn't able to say no to her. I think she took advantage of that. I was also really appalled by the mother in this story. I know it happens more often than not, but I think she was mostly to blame with what happens in this story. And she didn't care at all.
The biggest downfall for me was the ending. I HATED it. While I get there was no happily ever after here, I wanted something more. The ending was not what I was expecting. Although, I do admit there was a sliver of light in the end. I was afraid it was going to take a turn for the complete tragedy and I was afraid I would through the book against the wall.
Overall, I recommend this. There are many who liked it way more than I did. Most who don't seem to be unable to get past the brother/sister relationship.