Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Review: Panic by Lauren Oliver



Title: Panic
Author: Lauren Oliver
Series: Stand Alone
Published By: Harper Collins (March 4, 2014)
Source: ARC Copy Provided by the Author (in exchange for an honest review)
Genre: YA
My Rating: 3.5 Stars!

Book Description:
Panic began as so many things do in Carp, a dead-end town of 12,000 people in the middle of nowhere: because it was summer, and there was nothing else to do.

Heather never thought she would compete in Panic, a legendary game played by graduating seniors, where the stakes are high and the payoff is even higher. She’d never thought of herself as fearless, the kind of person who would fight to stand out. But when she finds something, and someone, to fight for, she will discover that she is braver than she ever thought.

Dodge has never been afraid of Panic. His secret will fuel him, and get him all the way through the game, he’s sure of it. But what he doesn't know is that he’s not the only one with a secret. Everyone has something to play for.

For Heather and Dodge, the game will bring new alliances, unexpected revelations, and the possibility of first love for each of them—and the knowledge that sometimes the very things we fear are those we need the most.






I have been a fan of Oliver's ever since reading her Delirium series. I just love her writing and the way she makes me care about her characters so, of course, when I saw her new novel I just had to pick it up. I was pretty excited to read something else from her and, I admit, my expectations were pretty high.

I sometimes hate it when I have high expectations, especially when I am expecting one thing and get something else entirely. 

Don't get me wrong this wasn't a bad read, not at all, just not the read I thought I was getting. What did I think I was getting? Something more, horrific, with more danger, more horror, maybe even something more along the lines of her Delirium series and a dystopian even.

Either way, this turned out to be quite the unique read however you spin it.

Maybe not as fantastic as the synopsis made it out to be and even a little bizarre at times but definitely something you need to experience for yourself. 

Carp is a small town with a small population. Where everyone knows everybody, everyone has a secret and everyone wants to get out. A town riddled with poverty, hardship and even meanness. 

A town where Panic is the only chance some of them have at escape and for some, even revenge. 

A town that is very much not what it seems and no one is who they really thought they were.

Hmm, honestly, I read this book a few months back and never was able to write a review for it. Why? Because I felt like I really needed to sit back and process all that I had read and felt while reading it. This has an almost darker, sadder feel to it that is really hard to describe. No one in the town is truly happy. In fact it feels like a heaviness settles over you when you first open the pages. 

A town where no one is happy with their life, their situations or with each other but all of the young people there have one thing is common, they want escape.  To go somewhere better, to be someone else, to live a life other than the one they are in. To have a chance and to have hope. 

It was a different read. An unexpected read but still a good read with all the writing I love from Oliver, just a very different feel and tone to it.

I don't really know what else to say about it other than if you read it, be prepared to experience something you probably haven't before from her writing, world and characters. 

It won't be bad (just, here I use that word again) different. 










*All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by the author or publisher. I was not compensated for this review.*




26 comments:

  1. I'm afraid that this will happen to me with this book. I love Lauren's writing style and her stories but I think I'm expecting too much out of this. I'm glad it was an unique read as they are my fave. Great review, Ali :)

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    1. Yeah I really should have went in with no expectations at all except great writing.

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  2. I bought her Delirium series but never read it. But I've alway been curious about her writing.

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    1. She is a very good writer I hope even if it isn't this one, that you do give her work a try :)

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  3. High expectations are so tricky aren't they? It's almost impossible not to have them when you're picking up a book from an author you love, but at the same time you wish you could get rid of all expectation before you start so you won't be disappointed if the story doesn't meet them. I'm sorry this one wasn't quite the story you had hoped it would be, but sometimes a really different read works well for me, especially when I'm aware of things like heaviness you mentioned going in, so I'm going to keep this on my list for now. Thanks for your thoughts Ali!

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    1. I think if I would have expected the darkness of it I would have enjoyed it much more. I think if you are aware of it from the beginning you will like this one Jenny. :)

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  4. You're right, of course, that different is always bad. :-)

    Anna from Shout with Emaginette


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    1. Sometimes different can be very good. ;)

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  5. I keep picking this up and setting it back down after reading earlier reviews and finding out this wasn't the genre I was expecting. Wonderful review Ali

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    1. It is different Kim, hopefully if you do try it, you will like it.

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  6. I have this and plan on reading it soon. I have not read her Delirium series that is why I picked this up so I won't have anything to compare it to so I will hopefully enjoy it a bit more?

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  7. After reading the delirium series I too have pretty high expectations of this book and for good reasons right? :( kinda said to hear it didn't live up to those expectations either, especially since it's a stand-alone.

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  8. I really love her so it's a bit disappointing this didn't have more of a WOW effect. But I'm sure I'll read it. This is the first review I've seen for it so I'll be curious to see what others are saying.

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    1. I can't wait to see what you thought about it if you do decide to Candace.

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  9. You know what ... I thought this book was more sci-fi for some reason. I haven't read any of Oliver's books, but want to. I'll probably start with her other series though. Great review!

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    1. I thought it had something unworldly too but, nope.

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  10. I've read Delirium and Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver, and I'm excited to read this one. The story definitely sounds unique and I'm curious to read about the town. Thanks for the great, honest review! :)

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  11. Hmm I think high expectations can be a curse sometimes because I feel like if I don't get the story I was hoping for I'm really let down. I have this on my TBR pile, and I have to confess I thought it was going to be more exciting and dangerous, like Delirium, but I'm glad to have read your review so I can adjust my expectations. Wonderful balanced review Ali!

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  12. It sounds interesting! I love your review! Honest and awesome

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  13. I've had this for a while and need to make time for it soon. I had high expectations for it also. Thanks for the review.

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    1. Hopefully you will like it a little more than I did Ellen.

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