Review: Struck

Author: Jennifer Bosworth
  • Published: May 8, 2012
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux
  • Reading Level: Ages 12 and Up
  • Pages: 382 pages
  • Source: Bought
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~*~Summary~*~
 Mia Price is a lightning addict. She’s survived countless strikes, but her craving to connect to the energy in storms endangers her life and the lives of those around her.

Los Angeles, where lightning rarely strikes, is one of the few places Mia feels safe from her addiction. But when an earthquake devastates the city, her haven is transformed into a minefield of chaos and danger. The beaches become massive tent cities. Downtown is a crumbling wasteland, where a traveling party moves to a different empty building each night, the revelers drawn to the destruction by a force they cannot deny. Two warring cults rise to power, and both see Mia as the key to their opposing doomsday prophecies. They believe she has a connection to the freak electrical storm that caused the quake, and to the far more devastating storm that is yet to come.

Mia wants to trust the enigmatic and alluring Jeremy when he promises to protect her, but she fears he isn’t who he claims to be. In the end, the passion and power that brought them together could be their downfall. When the final disaster strikes, Mia must risk unleashing the full horror of her strength to save the people she loves, or lose everything.

~*~Lili's Reflections~*~

Mia Price is a lightning addict. What's not to pull you in? Who ever thought of a plot-line like that? Well, Jennifer Bosworth did! But her problem is that she didn't fully deliver. Yes, this was an enjoyable read, but it didn't live up to its potential. The originality that came with the overall plot was overridden by young adult cliches like insta-love, trusting people with murderous intent, and running head-long into evil with irrational thoughts. Haven't we seen a lot of that in young adult novels these days? I can't even express how strongly I wish the plot could reach its potential.

Mia craves getting struck by lightning, but she doesn't enjoy its aftereffects. She works to constantly cover up the scars littering her body and is often moving around because of accidents that can hurt others around her. She doesn't really understand what she is capable of. After her mother is unearthed from a pile of rubble days after an earthquake strikes LA, Mia finds herself stuck in the middle of a war between good and evil. Both sides want her for her power, believing that she is capable of creating and/or ending the lightning storm that's supposed to destroy the world. And alongside her is Jeremy. She has no idea where he came from, but he insists that she can't join either side and instead must stand alone. Mia has to pick a side, fast. The end of the world is only three days (and counting) away.

The characters weren't easy to relate to. I don't know how else to put it. Mia didn't really think rationally half the time and half of her decisions are extremely frustrating to you as a reader. She was constantly running into dangerous situations against her better judgment because it was up to her to save the world. She'd fight everyone around her, go with her instincts, just to double back and wish she followed the advice given to her by someone else. Plus, at times, she lacks common sense. For example, let's say someone admits that sometime in the past several days they attempted to murder you. Sure, they didn't go through with it, but they had the knife at the ready and was seriously considering it. Would you forgive them and trust them? Logic says NO! Why do you lack such common sense, Mia? I get that accepting everything is essential to the story, but I mean, common sense is important! You break out the pepper spray and run in the opposite direction! Silly, naive girl that seems to have the weight of the world on her shoulders.

Then there's Jeremy. Jeremy's the love interest and supposed savior. He's one of those guys that's always trying to help, but he can't tell you anything about his past. Yet, somehow, the main character still falls for him despite his evasiveness and creepiness. Yeah, I don't really know what else to say about him. His characterization in itself is the typical young adult male protagonist these days. Nothing original besides his special capabilities that you'll have to find out about when reading.

I don't think any of the characters were fully developed. They were all half developed. Characters who promised to stop lying kept lying. Characters were hypocritical of others. Characters that were supposed to be all goody-goody started turning with no reason. They needed to be fully developed, but Bosworth didn't give her characters much time to develop.

This novel is told over a series of 3 or 4 days. Being over 300 pages long, that's a lot of action packed into 3 or 4 days. Let me tell you... they were a long couple of days. While it is extremely easy to get caught up in everything, you find yourself shocked that Bosworth was allowing so much to happen in such a short span of time whenever she reminds you how far away the quake that's supposed to end the world is. And because the novel takes place over the course of a few days, you can imagine how the romance in the novel didn't make sense at all. If anything, this is the worst case of insta-love I have ever read. I mean, it all happened in the course of 3 days. You can't fall in love in 3 days. Well, apparently Mia and Jeremy can. Not to mention the fact that while doing so, Mia can criticize her mother for falling for someone else in the course of a day (even if tricked into doing so). So, it's okay for Mia to be irrational, but not her mother? I think that neither of them should be irrational and the hypocrisy in this aspect of the novel should be effectively eliminated. It would help the novel flow better and add some more positive things to Mia's characterization.

 This novel is also full of religious themes. Religion is used to explain everything. Prophet is always preaching and using the Bible as a means to explain his reasoning, even if extremely skewed. I'm not at all religious, but the religious themes were extremely prominent to me. I don't mind religion in novels if its used as a means for explaining things, but I felt like this was constantly in-your-face religion.

 With everything being said, I'm giving this novel 3.5 stars. With all of its reservations, I couldn't help but read absolutely everything with a hunger to know what happens next. It had such great potential and I so wish that Bosworth executed it properly instead of relying on cliches to let the plot flow. If the characters were fully developed and there was more time to explain everything and less room for cliches, this book would be a 5 star page-turner. Instead, it's just a 3.5 star page-turner.

If you're looking for something with a central focus on something unique, then this is a good book for you. It's a constant page-turner, but it's full of cliches that sometimes take away from the plot. 

~*~Cover~*~

I love the cover! it shows the rundown area of LA after the first quake and the lightning storm that will change it all. Plus, the scars on the girls arms are just how I imagined Mia's scars to be. However, I never imagined her airing her scars out for everyone to see like she is on the cover. If anything, I would prefer her in her all black get-up that the author often described as a "robber-like" outfit.

 
3.5 stars

~*~Links~*~

4 comments:

  1. That sucks that there are cliches! I was really excited for this one. I'm glad it's still unique though. I'll read it anyways. I meant to have it finished, but I haven't even been able to start it yet :( Studying always gets in the way. Great review, and I agree - the cover is pretty awesome!

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    1. Studying gets in the way of everything. I get ya completely! lol

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  2. When I first saw this book I loved the cover, so I picked it up and read the synopsis and stopped after "Mia is a lightning addict" *Huh? What? Weird!* I tried to read on, but it just got weirder (and that was only the synopsis. I'm glad I didn't pick up a copy, because I don't think I would have liked the inside.
    Thanks for your great, and honest, review.

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    1. It was certainly unique! lol Weird... yes... but unique (and cliche.)

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