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Book Reviews

Review: “Wrecked,” Anna Davies

May 7, 2012
Review: “Wrecked,” Anna DaviesWrecked (Standalone)
Written by Anna Davies
Published May, 2012 by Simon & Schuster
321 pages
Genres: Mermaids / Selkies, Romance
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one-star

Ever since the death of her parents, Miranda has lived on Whym Island, taking comfort in the local folklore, which claims a mysterious sea witch controls the fate of all on the island and in its surrounding waters. Sometimes it’s just easier to believe things are out of your control.

But then a terrible boating accident takes the lives of several of her friends, and Miranda is rescued by a mysterious boy who haunts her dreams. Consumed by guilt from the accident, she finds refuge in late-night swims—and meets Christian, a boy who seems eerily familiar, but who is full of mystery: He won’t tell her where he is from, or why they can only meet at the beach. But Miranda falls for him anyway…and discovers that Christian’s secrets, though meant to protect her, may bring her nothing but harm.

My main problem with Wrecked was that I didn’t connect to any of its characters. The romance was rushed, the focus was not on the fantasy aspect of the book (which I wanted) and the main character was just someone I could not sympathize with. It’s a shame, because Wrecked seemed to have it all from the amazing cover and synopsis.

I’m so disappointed that I didn’t enjoy Wrecked – it’s been on my TBR pile since I first heard about it and I had so much fun interviewing Anna Davies, she’s lovely. Like I mentioned, my main problem with the book was the lack of connection I had to the characters. I’m not sure what it was, but the whole book felt rushed and as soon as I thought I was getting a handle on someone or something, it was time to move along again.

Miranda is the female lead and I wished that she hadn’t succumbed to so many YA cliches. Dead parents? Check. Outcast? Check. As I got deeper into the book I found that I felt her to be quite a ‘Mary Sue’ character, and that never bodes well with me. Instead of being strong and being able to deal with things, Miranda would constantly change her mind and go running away crying or yelling, taking the story in all these different directions when it would have been beneficial to focus on just the one scenario. Does that make sense? If Miranda had been a fiercer lead, we could have experienced the story in a different light. The story sorely needed focus on some of its aspects, and Miranda could have helped that along if she would just STAY PUT. She also kept saying; ‘I’m fine’, ‘It’s fine’ and I found myself wondering if Miranda knew how to say anything else but ‘fine’.

Christian… I’m afraid I felt nothing for him. Usually I can muster up something to swoon over, but he felt incredibly bland to me. Although his certain brand of mythology – being a ‘betwixtman’ – could have brought a lot to the story, it wasn’t really explored and Christian was somewhat of a cardboard cutout for Miranda to play with. He rescues Miranda, and that’s where his appeal ends. He ‘fell in love’ with her instantly, wanting to sacrifice his duty/life for her and I just didn’t find it believable at all. I also had a hard time imagining a merman/betwixtman being called ‘Christian’ when they don’t even speak our language. Same goes for his brother, Valentine.

The relationship between Christian and Miranda wasn’t convincing in the slightest. Miranda is still grieving from the accident that killed four of her friends and put her boyfriend, Fletch, into a coma. I found it hard to believe that she was off spending nights on the beach wrapped in some stranger’s embrace when her boyfriend was practically a vegetable in hospital. I can understand the need for Miranda to talk to someone; but to fall in love with them instantly? When you know nothing about them or have barely talked? Christian didn’t offer much in the ‘opening up’ department, so I don’t know how Miranda could grasp much about him as a ‘person’.

Talking about the accident, I want to discuss the fact that none of the anger seemed warranted. Especially from those who were also in the wreck with Miranda – they SAW what happened and knew it wasn’t Miranda’s fault. A little distance or gossip would be expected, but not the outright ‘you’ve done enough, don’t you think?’ or blatant blacklisting. Not to mention Fletch’s parents not allowing Miranda by his bedside when she was his girlfriend. Yes, Miranda was driving the boat at the time of the accident, but I found it completely unbelievable that nobody on the whole island seemed sympathetic when she was injured and distraught herself.

Also, the identity of Sephie was so obvious I wanted to poke Miranda in the eye.

Basically, Wrecked had a LOT of potential but it followed the well-travelled, boring road of predictable YA. If you’re not one for ‘insta-love’, overused cliches, etc. you might want to steer clear of this one.

Recommended to: If, like me, you’ve seen some negative reviews but are curious to judge it for yourself, pick up Wrecked. Hopefully you’ll enjoy it more than I did.

About Anna Davies

A former senior editor for Cosmo, Anna has also been on staff at Redbook and Family Circle and has written for The New York Times, New York, Glamour, Elle UK, Fitness, Self, and others and has ghostwritten ten New York Times bestselling young adult novels, as well as written three YA novels under her own name.

1 Comment

  • Reply a. knight @ paranormal indulgence May 7, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    Oh, no! That’s really unfortunate because I’ve really been anxious to read this book. I dislike characters who are so weak-willed, and if I can’t connect and sympathize? Forget it. AND NO SWOONING OVER CHRISTIAN? That really stinks! Especially the unbelievable instalove, lack of real understandable chemistry. I guess this one is going further down in my TBR.

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