Abandon is the first book of a new paranormal trilogy for young adults by Meg Cabot. At fifteen Pierce drowned and was brought back to life. Rather than just seeing a bright light, however, Pierce met a god of the Underworld. Two years later, she is still struggling for normalcy. As Abandon begins, Pierce and her mother move back to her mother's hometown on Isla Huesos, off the coast of south Florida. But in Isla Huesos, Pierce finds herself closer than ever to the lord of the Underworld.
I must admit that Abandon is not my favorite of Cabot's YA novels. I thought that it got off to a slow start, and that the back-and-forth reveal of Pierce's experiences was confusing. (Though an introductory reference to Persephone makes it fairly clear where the book is going to go). The second half of the novel, once all of the background was solidly in place, was much more enjoyable. And Abandon does have that quality that Cabot is especially good at, juxtaposing supernatural elements against a breezy high school backdrop (I love her 1-800-where-r-u series).
Cabot renders the popular kids in Abandon as mean and shallow, and the quirky, unpopular kids as the ones with depth. Here's a tirade from Pierce's cousin, Alex:
"You think by buying me a Gut Buster," Alex said, his anger hurtling down on me like one of John's thunderclaps, "I'm going to go over and sit with those A-Wingers, and we're all going to learn, despite our apparent outward differences like that they all wear designer labels and drive brand-new cars their daddies bought them for their birthdays, and I wear clothes from the Salvation Army and drive a rusted old junk heap, that we have something in common? Like maybe we can all sing and dance, and then we're each going to get parts starring in Isla Huesos High School's musical, like this is some kind of damned Disney movie? Well, I've got news for you, Pierce. That's not going to happen. (Page 166, ARC)
And here is a quote that basically sums up the book:
"What did any of it mean? Where could it go? He was a death deity. I was a senior in high school.
This was never going to work." (Page 262, ARC)
I love the matter-of-fact tone, even as Pierce is talking about a death deity. Abandon ends on a cliff-hanger, and did leave me wanting to read the next book. If nothing else, I want to know the answer to the above question: how can a relationship between a death deity and an ordinary high school senior work out? If you find such a question intriguing, and/or you're a fan of Meg Cabot's YA novels, then Abandon is for you.
Publisher: Point (@Scholastic)
Publication Date: April 26, 2011
Source of Book: Advance review copy from the publisher. Quotes should be checked against the final book.
© 2011 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. All Amazon links in this post are affiliate links, and may result in my receiving a small commission on purchases (with no additional cost to you).