Broken Thingsby Published 02 Oct 2018
It’s been five years since Summer Marks was brutally murdered in the woods.
Everyone thinks Mia and Brynn killed their best friend. That driven by their obsession with a novel called The Way into Lovelorn the three girls had imagined themselves into the magical world where their fantasies became twisted, even deadly.
The only thing is: they didn’t do it.
On the anniversary of Summer’s death, a seemingly insignificant discovery resurrects the mystery and pulls Mia and Brynn back together once again. But as the lines begin to blur between past and present and fiction and reality, the girls must confront what really happened in the woods all those years ago—no matter how monstrous.
"Broken Things" Reviews
Well, I did indeed finish this with record breaking Lauren Oliver speed. While I did have the murderer figured out by page 25 (this could be chalked up to simply reading too many mysteries) and it felt slightly bloated, overall this was a compulsive, can't put it down type of book that I think many readers will enjoy. I'm going to think on this one a bit more before writing my full review, but I'll go ahead and post trigger warnings below.
CW: Murder of children, graphic violence, pedophilia, murder and abuse of an animal (this is graphic and highly unsettling), homophobic slurs (always challenged but used multiple times throughout), and fat shaming comments.
*I received a copy for review via the publisher.
apart from her ‘delirium’ series (which i adored), lauren olivers books have been a hit or miss for me. however, i was really looking forward to reading this because this is the first time ive read any sort of mystery story by LO and i couldnt wait to see how she did.
overall, i wasnt too disappointed with this, but it didnt excite me as much as i wanted it to, either. true to her style, the writing in this is wonderful. its the kind of prose that makes you want to read the entire book in one sitting. but the characters? not so much. there just wasnt anything about them that made me become invested in their lives, which is kind of the opposite of what you want from a murder mystery. also, the conclusion felt very underdeveloped, in my opinion. maybe it was because i didnt guess the ending like most people did, so it just felt like a 400 page book was quickly wrapped up within a short chapter.
regardless, i thought the fantasy element mixed in with a mystery was really clever. i liked how it was a book within a book and i thought the writing reflected that very well. i think this is perfect for any lauren oliver fans, but i wouldnt recommend it to anyone looking for a gripping mystery.
↠ 3 stars
This review and other non-spoilery reviews can be found @The Book Prescription
Actual Rating: 3.5 stars
“Five years ago, when I had just turned thirteen, I killed my best friend.
I chased her down and cracked her over the head with a rock. Then I dragged her body out of the woods and into a field and arranged it in the center of a circle of stones I’d placed there with my other friend, Mia. Then we knifed her twice in the throat, and five times in the chest. Mia was planning to douse her body with gasoline and light her on fire, but something went wrong and we bolted instead."
🌟 This is the opening chapter and once I read this I was intrigued and wanted to read this. I was happy to see that there ARCS out there and happier that I got approved in one day!
🌟 Now, Lauren Oliver is a smart author, I like what she did with Replica and Ringer. Her other books are also bestsellers but I don’t see her books getting much hype lately. I wanted to discover why because to me they seem as good ones.
🌟 Now, this started out brilliant. I love when first lines can make you want to read the whole thing. But the main problem is after this this started to get a bit slower and no as much as interesting. I mentioned in my last review the new trend of 3 girls and this books follows this trend, I forgot to mention that this trend entails one of the girls being a Lesbian which is also found here. The problem is that Summer who was murdered seemed like a good person at first but then I couldn’t sympathize with her.
🌟 The characters were not the best part of this, there is a fat rep that is not so great. The girls were annoying at sometimes too. I would have preferred if I could relate to the girls more.
🌟 Also this has a book inside a book. There are bits of the books that the girls wrote as a fan-fiction and to be honest, I didn’t give a damn about it. It was short and fast and that’s good but it didn’t add much to the story. This was a thriller and I am supposed to be on my toes with excitement and although I wanted to know what really happened, the suspense waned at some points. The reveal didn’t catch my breath too!
🌟 The writing was mostly good although some metaphors made me cringe. But the ending was so smart too and It made me happy again, hence the additional 0.5 star.
“I knew even then that my dad was wrong- words could kill you, in a thousand different ways.”
Summary: A good thriller novel that has excellent beginning and endings, don’t go to this with very high expectations and you will enjoy it more. If you are a writer, I think this may help in some creative writing too.
ARC provided by the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.
What really happened to Summer? Summer Marks was brutally murdered in the woods. Everyone thinks her best friends did it... they didn't.
Broken Things was definitely an engaging read, unfortunately it was also quite predictable. The story begins on the 5th anniversary of Summer's brutal murder. We know that her best friends, Mia and Brynn, didn't do it. Yet, each girl holds pieces of the puzzle, secrets they have never shared with anyone.
Mia and Brynn haven't spoken since they were accused of Summer's murder. While cleaning out her home Mia uncovers the book they were obsessed with - The Way into Lovelorn. In the early days of their friendship the girls spent their days recreating the book in their very own Lovelorn, a decorated shack in the woods. The girls' frenzy for the story lead to a shared obsession for writing a sequel. Mia knows the truth of Summer's murder is somehow tied to Lovelorn. Summer was the most obsessed of them all. She had introduced them to the world of Lovelorn and was its gatekeeper. After her death, Lovelorn had simply disappeared. One day the shack was there with its flowered wallpaper and decorations. The next, it was back to being just a dusty abandoned shack. It was as if their Lovelorn had never really existed. The police wrote off Mia's story as fantasy but she knew there was more to it. Lovelorn had existed and the key to solving Summer's murder lay with it.
I enjoyed the idea of the story and the main characters were well developed. Brynn and Mia were both struggling as a result of their friend's murder. I found the direction their lives had taken since the murder interesting and enjoyed watching them reconnect. The cast of side characters - Owen and Abby were quirky and awesome. So why then did I rate the book just 3 stars? The predictability factor did it for me. I figured out who really killed Summer very early on and while I was hoping to be proven wrong, I wasn't. I was also very underwhelmed by the entire reveal. Once I suspected who it was, I knew the reason - it was the only plausible one in my mind. I was really hoping for something more. All in all this was a good read. It just wasn't amazing.
Actual rating: 3.5
Thank you Harper Collins for sending a review copy in exchange for an honest review
Trigger Warning: Murder, abuse, animal abuse, pedophilia, self harm and violence.
The moment I read the synopsis I knew I had to read this book. Mystery has never been one of my usual genres but I figured this one was definitely worth a try.
The way the first chapter started hooked me in immediately. I was intrigued by the plot and excited to start guessing who the real murderer was. The story was told from two perspective: Brynn and Mia. Both were Summer Marks best friends. We alternate between the two most of the time. There were chapters in between with quotes from The Way Into Lovelorn.
Brynn was a favorite. She was funny (her points of view were the funniest in my opinion) She admitted to the mistakes that she made even if she didn't voice them out loud. She had flaws but so does every character. Mia was a lot more quiet and didn't really say much to most people. She stood up when something wrong was done or said so that’s one thing. Both girls had their own things to deal with in this story. I liked getting to know how different they both were from each other.
The story was really easy to get into. I was interested from the beginning until the end. I played detective and kept keeping a mental profile of all the characters trying to guess who the murderer really was. The guessed who really killed Summer early on in the book but kept it aside. At some point I was 100% sure I was right. Turns out I actually was. I felt like guessing the killer really dimmed the magic of the story for me a little bit.
Overall, the story was really enjoyable. It was different than most of the book I’ve read. I really enjoyed the writing too. Would definitely recommend the book to those who love a good mystery.
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