BOOK REVIEW: Perfect Ruin
Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopia
Age Group: Young Adult
Format: eBook (Kindle)
Publication Date: October 1, 2013
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Purchase: Amazon, Book Depository
On Internment, the floating island in the clouds where 15-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.
One morning as he was fixing his tie, he warned me that if I kept spinning, I'd be stolen by the wind and carried off into the sky. "We'll never get you back then," he said.
The words were meant to frighten me, but instead they filled me with romantic notions that became a part of my game. I began to imagine being carried on the wind and landing on the ground, seeing for myself what was happening below our city.
Perfect Ruin is an amazing book, beautifully written. I had fun reading it, and yes I am very much excited to read the second book in the series. The book of course isn't flawless, but the characters and the setting itself deserves all the stars in the Milky Way galaxy.
The plot is my only problem with this book. It is slow but it isn't the kind of slow that bores you to death, then it got so confusing by the end of the book. There's too much event and revelation in the last part. And yes folks, the ending is hanging. But not the kind of hanging end that makes you want to burn a hole in the book, or threaten the author for making the end like that. The ending makes you think...really think and be excited for the next book.
The first humans were especially ungrateful. After the birth of the sun and the moon, they asked for stars. After the crops rose from the ground, they asked for beasts to fill the fields. After some time, the god of the ground, weary of their demands, thought it best to destroy them and begin again with humbler beings. So it goes that the god of the sky thought the first humans too clever to waste, and he agreed to keep them in the sky with the promise that they would never again interfere with the ground.
- The History of Internment, Chapter 1Internment is a fascinating place. It's basically a floating island. Its citizens shouldn't approach the edge on the other side of the train tracks. But there are those who do. They are called Jumpers. Jumpers are either mad or have physical disabilities, like Morgan's brother, Lex, who is blind.
Our knowledge of the place is only limited to what Morgan's, the main protagonist, knowledge. A girl was murdered and her body was found by the train tracks, that's where the story begins...and so Morgan begins to show us her world. Crime rate is 0%. It controls who dies and who gives birth. Betrothals are arranged. In Internment, your life's major decisions are made for you.
Morgan Stockhour is a dreamer. She dreams of the place below often. But even if she does, she still loves Internment. She's a likable character. She's naive, but not to the point where she becomes a TSTL character. She aims to become a good daughter, a good friend, worthy of her betrothal and just be normal. That's why even though she wants to see what lies ahead the edge, she acts as if she doesn't want to.
"...I lied, Basil. I told her that of course I didn't think about the edge. But I do. I dream about it. I want to know what will happen if I cross the tracks. I don't want to jump;I just want to look down. I want to see what's down there with my own eyes, not through a scope."All the characters in this book are well written, and likable. Yes, even if they act stupidly. I especially love Basil. Basil isn't the usual book-guys that I prefer. For example, in The Infernal Devices I prefer Will more than Jem or Gabriel, or Gideon. And Will is cocky. Basil is more of a Jem-like character. Jem is okay, but I prefer Will. Basil should just be okay, too. But Basil is just awesome! I love him. And how soft his character is. He's forgiving, thoughtful and smart. I can probably go on writing about him. But this isn't just about him. Moving on... (LOL Sorry!) Pen is also an interesting character. I love how tough she is, but still has a vulnerable side. She's like most of the main characters in other dystopian books. And I admire Pen for staying friends with Morgan despite Lex being a jumper. Because in Internment having a jumper in the family is frowned upon.
"This floating city is all you'll ever have," he says. "It's enough for some, but not for people like you and me. It saddens me that you'll have to learn that, just like I had to."
The relationships in this book are believable, especially those relationships with dark stories. Morgan and her parents became distant every since her brother's "accident". Morgan's mother is having a hard time coping up, and she's always worried. Morgan's father isn't always there, especially after the murder of the girl in the train tracks. And even though it's obvious that Lex's accident shook the whole family, Lex tries to act normally around Morgan. He still treats her the way he always do. I find their relationship cute; Lex teasing Morgan, Morgan taking care of Lex, Lex worrying about Morgan, Lex hinting Morgan about the changes in Internment. Alice, Lex's wife, treats Morgan like a sister. And the way Alice and Lex cares for each other is so touching.
Hooray for the romance! It was minimal and not all over the place. And I never rolled my eyes when Basil and Morgan are being cheesy... Haha! Half-way through the book, I fear that a love-triangle might come my way. But so far there's no solid hint.
"Morgan." He takes my hands. "Whatever you decide, I want you to know that I'll stand behind it. I said I'll follow you off the edge, and I meant it. I'd jump into the sky with you. Wherever you go, you won't have to go alone. Even if you want to go back."
If you love dystopian books and, cute and caring boys. Then...go for this book!