REVIEW: Perfect Ruin by Lauren DeStefano

perfectruinPerfect Ruin (Internment Chronicles #1)
by Lauren DeStefano

Simon & Schuster, 2013
[Goodreads] [Book Depository]

On Internment, the floating island in the clouds where 16-year-old Morgan Stockhour lives, getting too close to the edge can lead to madness. Even though Morgan’s older brother, Lex, was a Jumper, Morgan vows never to end up like him. She tries her best not to mind that her life is orderly and boring, and if she ever wonders about the ground, and why it is forbidden, she takes solace in best friend Pen and her betrothed, Basil.

Then a murder, the first in a generation, rocks the city. With whispers swirling and fear on the wind, Morgan can no longer stop herself from investigating, especially when she meets Judas. He is the boy being blamed for the murder — betrothed to the victim — but Morgan is convinced of his innocence. Secrets lay at the heart of Internment, but nothing can prepare Morgan for what she will find — or who she will lose.

mythoughtsBefore I get into the actual review for this book, I want to preface it by being completely and utterly forthcoming about my mental state while reading it. I started this book back in December, after Christmas, and just finished it in mid-March. This is not a knock on Perfect Ruin at all, but more a knock on myself and the utter apathy I found myself mired in that made me just wholly uninterested in picking the book up and reading it in a more timely fashion. Because of my overall feelings toward reading in general, I’m a little worried that this review will read as a whole lot of “meh”; this book was not meh, it was just the unfortunate victim of the aforementioned apathy. So with that rather longish disclaimer out of the way, let me just remind you that you’re more than welcome to take every single thing I write here with a rather large grain of salt.

That being said, Perfect Ruin wasn’t really anything spectacular. I did like the world-building – the idea of a floating city ruled with a king’s heavy hand, where things like a birth queue and chosen betrotheds are the norm, was interesting, well-developed and unique – and the main character, Morgan, was also someone I found myself interested in and sympathizing with. However, the thing that was supposed to grip the reader and begin driving the plot forward is the murder of a girl Morgan attends school with, and honestly I never really felt that hook. The book was a bit slow to really get around to the “point” (for lack of a better word), and it was a good 3/4 of the way through that the story’s main agenda began to take shape. Again, my apathy towards reading in general most likely didn’t help matters here, but I just really found myself sort of vaguely following along as Morgan went about her days.

And maybe that was the problem. This book was quite cyclical: Morgan gets up, Morgan rides the train, Morgan goes to school. She interacts with her betrothed, her best friend, Pen, and Pen’s betrothed. Even with the murder, that monotony wasn’t really broken up. But then again, maybe that was the point. I mean, how much can really happen on a small city that’s floating in the sky? Morgan makes a point of mentioning (several times) that life is pretty much the same all the time on Internment, so if showing the sameness and, well … boringness was the point, then I guess the author did a bang-up job. But as someone who likes a tad more variety and excitement in the books she reads, it just really fell a bit flat for me personally.

I will say that the ending was much more interesting and intriguing, and I am planning on reading the sequel when it’s released to see what comes next for Morgan and the others. Still, Perfect Ruin is not a book I can rave about in any way, shape or form, although I will say that if you have been at all interested in reading it, then definitely go for it. Most likely you will not have the same reading experience as I did, and I know that my mood played a definite factor in my overall feelings for it. Lots of folks have liked it, and it is a solid beginning to a new series, so. Make of all that what you will, I guess?



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8 Responses to REVIEW: Perfect Ruin by Lauren DeStefano

  1. Elin says:

    Great review of the book, I’ve never read it but heard about it on various blogs. Sounds exciting, going to check it out eventually. Love the cover, beautiful!

  2. LilysBookBlog says:

    I remember taking a good week to finish this book. It was very boring and I couldn’t get into it at all. I simply didn’t care about the characters. I think you ended up enjoying this one more than I did though, even if it took you so long to read lol!

  3. MsJohannah says:

    I downloaded this on my kindle awhile back. Good to know that went I put it down 5% in and said ‘I’ll get back to it.’ I might have been having the same problems you listed.

  4. Ellie M. says:

    There have been actually few books lately that changed my opinion on them just because of the ending. Great review, I still have to read this one

  5. Candice says:

    I think most people took a while with this one, but there was something about it that made it good. Maybe it was the ending. I enjoyed it, but found it dragging some at points. I think it’s one of those books that you have to absorb little details and context clues because there’s not a ton happening. But like you said, what all really happens on a tiny floating island?

  6. Pingback: REVIEW: Burning Kingdoms by Lauren DeStefano | Read and Reviewed

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