Abandon by Meg Cabot, published by Macmillan Children's Books on 1st September 2011
Last year, Pierce died - just for a moment. And when she was in the space between life and death, she met John: tall dark and terrifying, it’s his job to usher souls from one realm to the next.
There’s a fierce attraction between them, but Pierce knows that if she allows herself to fall for John she will be doomed to a life of shadows and loneliness in the underworld. But now things are getting dangerous for her, and her only hope is to do exactly what John says...
Meg Cabot is my all time favourite YA author but funnily enough when I checked my blog, I realised that I haven't actually reviewed one of her books here yet - a situation I'm about to remedy! Meg is the only author that I have a dedicated shelf to on my bookcases and every one of her books I've read, adored and re-read over and over. She has an incredible talent to be able to write about literally any subject and make it fascinating and wonderful. I was beyond thrilled when I received a proof copy of 'Abandon' for review. I treat Meg Cabot books like a box of chocolates, slowly savouring each one at a time and enjoying having new books of hers to read when I need a Cabot kick!
I have to say right from the start of this review that I fell in love with 'Abandon'. The plot combines elements of ancient Greek mythology and features a new and original take on the story of Hades, Persephone and the Underworld. This is a subject which I knew I was going to be crazy about from the beginning. I am absolutely fascinated by stories about the Gods and I loved the way in which Meg Cabot explored the roots of this but gave it her own unique spin.
The story revolves around fifteen year old Pierce Oliviera who dies after a tragic accident and ends up in the Underworld where she meets the mysterious John Hayden. Brought back to life and coping with her near death experience, she finds that danger stalks her around every corner. Although determined to protect her friends and family from the evil that she can see lurking around them, she's unable to prevent the people she loves from being hurt and while John would seek to keep her safe, even he may not be able to protect her forever.
I absolutely adored Pierce and John. I mean for a dead guy John is a total hottie! Although their romance really took most of the book to kick into gear, I enjoyed the anticipation of them getting together, just as much as the moment when Pierce finally wakes up to her true feelings for John. Meg Cabot's characters are always incredibly well written and immensely likable and this was a distinct feature of Abandon. I loved the way that Pierce was so determined to look after the people she cares about and always seemed to put herself second, whereas John is present whenever she's in danger and lies continually looking out for her even when she doesn't know he's there. I'm so excited about seeing the romance between the two of them blossom further!
'Abandon' had a hugely entertaining storyline which had me completely gripped from start to finish. I can promise you that the Underworld has never been so appealing! There were dark undertones to the book, as well as some moments of light relief but I loved every single second of the characters' journeys as they traverse life and death situations.
The second book in the trilogy, 'Underworld' is due to be published next year but I haven't figured out yet how I'm going to be able to stand the wait!