Version: eGalley from NetGalley
Release Date: January 8th, 2012
I'll be honest, when I came across Broken, I read "modern spin on Mary Shelley's Frankenstein" and I was sold. That's all it took for me to get interested. So when I was approved on NetGalley, I jumped right in.
Here's the summary from Goodreads: Imagine 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.
What I Liked: 1) I liked the concept. The idea of a modern Frankenstein was what initially appealed to me. 2) Emma. I thought she was written very realistically, especially in her emotional response to both Daniel's death and Alex's appearance. She's easy to empathize with, and makes for a very likeable character. 3) The last 100 pages, where the Frankenstein story really came into play.
What I Didn't Like: This book is 406 pages long. The first 300 pages bore little resemblance to the story I was expecting to see - the modernized version of Frankenstein. In fact, the first 300 pages were so generic I wasn't sure I was going to get through it. It could have been any story, in any book. It felt forced, like it was following a set formula to simply get to the end. There needed to be more exploration of the Frankenstein story, like bringing it in from beginning, to truly be a modernized version.
Overall Thoughts: Despite the creativity and realistic and personable characters, I was disappointed in the lack of true Frankenstein story. It just didn't become present until near the end of the story, leaving the beginning lacking any true direction and becoming a rather generic version of YA fiction. The premise was good, but I just was hoping for more.
My Rating: 2 shots