Monday, October 22, 2012
The Lost Girl by Sangu Mandanna
Eva’s life is not her own. She is a creation, an abomination—an echo. Made by the Weavers as a copy of someone else, she is expected to replace a girl named Amarra, her “other”, if she ever died. Eva studies what Amarra does, what she eats, what it’s like to kiss her boyfriend, Ray. So when Amarra is killed in a car crash, Eva should be ready.
But fifteen years of studying never prepared her for this.
Now she must abandon everything she’s ever known—the guardians who raised her, the boy she’s forbidden to love—to move to India and convince the world that Amarra is still alive.
What Eva finds is a grief-stricken family; parents unsure how to handle this echo they thought they wanted; and Ray, who knew every detail, every contour of Amarra. And when Eva is unexpectedly dealt a fatal blow that will change her existence forever, she is forced to choose: Stay and live out her years as a copy or leave and risk it all for the freedom to be an original. To be Eva.
From debut novelist Sangu Mandanna comes the dazzling story of a girl who was always told what she had to be—until she found the strength to decide for herself.
I first saw this book when I was browsing the Harper Collins Catalogs, looking for new books to add to my ever growing collection. The cover is simply gorgeous and the summary set it apart from anything else I had heard of in a long time. I went in with very high hopes for the book and they were met with an amazingly deep book, something I wasn't expecting.
The characters in this book were extremely well crafted, they were deep with tons of background stories and well thought through. Eva's character was amazing. She gave me a ton to think about throughout the course of the entire book. Her life wasn't her own, her existence was dependent on Amarra, she could end her or completely change her life with a simple decision. When her life does get altered in a matter of days, Eva takes it in stride, not throwing a massive tantrum but still remaining appropriately upset about her life being turned upside down. Ray was interesting and well developed, really great with Eva and was able to make decisions for himself and not just to appease others. The rest of the characters were just as well developed, which was a very impressive feat considering just how many characters there were in the book. The story was also well developed, it went by with speed but it didn't feel too hasty. The writing was some of the best I've read in ages, it was highly descriptive with a great narrative voice.
I give The Lost Girl a 5/5 for being a thought provoking book that I simply adored. I'd recommend this book to teens looking for a paranormal read with a resoundingly deep message behind it. I know I'll be reading whatever else Sangu writes next.