Thursday, April 9, 2015

'The Walls Around Us' by Nova Ren Suma


“Ori’s dead because of what happened out behind the theater, in the tunnel made out of trees. She’s dead because she got sent to that place upstate, locked up with those monsters. And she got sent there because of me.”

The Walls Around Us is a ghostly story of suspense told in two voices—one still living and one long dead. On the outside, there’s Violet, an eighteen-year-old dancer days away from the life of her dreams when something threatens to expose the shocking truth of her achievement. On the inside, within the walls of a girls’ juvenile detention center, there’s Amber, locked up for so long she can’t imagine freedom. Tying these two worlds together is Orianna, who holds the key to unlocking all the girls’ darkest mysteries.

We hear Amber’s story and Violet’s, and through them Orianna’s, first from one angle, then from another, until gradually we begin to get the whole picture—which is not necessarily the one that either Amber or Violet wants us to see.

Nova Ren Suma tells a supernatural tale of guilt and innocence, and what happens when one is mistaken for the other.

I'm not entirely sure what happened in this book. The majority of it was confusing. I was lost and left to furrow my brow and scrunch up my nose. (Which I actually did as I read.) 
And I won't say this review will be spoiler free. I won't. Especially not with the angst I feel from Violet's acts as a character. 
And I feel like this book will turn into a rant sooner or later. I'll warn you if it does. 

The characters are interesting.
Violet. I'm not entirely sure about her. I won't say I like her. That's not true. I think she was overreacting. (Okay. Here are the spoilers. And the rant.) Sure. I have to 'kill' other people as well. My list is probably ten times longer than hers. I'm a touchy person. (It's swell being highly neurotic. Sarcasm, guys.) Sure. Those two caught you giving a guy a blowjob. Alright. They taped/photographed it. Alright. That does not mean you have a free pass to kill them. If all people who were bullied simply went out and killed their bully, the bullied would become the bully. (Spoilers end now.) Anyways. She didn't have a stunning personality. She was a bit...shallow. It was as if she needed Ori to just be better than her to wallow in pity. I don't get that at all. Why do you do that Violet? And she did pity herself. 'Oh man. Ori is so much better than me. I'm bullcrap.' I do think I can understand her on that level. After all, who doesn't have that one friend you have to just be a judge of your worth? We all have that one friend. What irks me is that Ori truly wanted to be friends. It wasn't like Ori was just talking to her and being nice Ori. Ori really wanted to be friends. (I think she was just that person who is nice even deep down in the bowls of their person.) And Violet's actions were a slap in the face. A 'You thought I wanted to be your friend?' I feel this anger towards Violet. But I'm ashamed to admit I'm too much like her than I care to be. And on that bombshell, I'll draw my rant about Violet to a close. 
Amber... I can't say. She is a shadow. She wasn't truly in the facility as much as you might think. She hovered in the corner. She was a whisper in the dark. Something invisible and empty. I think her backstory was fascinating. I wanted more about her backstory. And about her time in prison before Ori. ( the three years she was there, what did she learn? Did she have a relationship? Did she ever curl up and cry?) I think Amber could have been opened up more. There was much more to her than this girl who was a shadow.
Ori was really nice. Gosh. She was really nice. She didn't deserve the hatred and lies. I'm not entirely sure why she took the fall. I wouldn't. That's how you find out the difference between the truly good people and the ones with facades. 

The plot is...confusing. What exactly is happening? I'm not sure.
The plot is definitely dramatic. But it isn't fascinating enough for me. And I'm confused most of the book. The plot didn't really follow a storyline. It leaped from time to time. That's what made it confusing. And there wasn't anything that interested me. I liked the parts about the crimes the best. But that really wasn't the plot.
The plot was just out there. Not really...any plot. Which is hard to believe. 

I'm not sure how the story ended. 
What happened? How did Ori come back? I'm lost. The ending, if it followed the ending I think I understand, had Ori in a great place. And Violet facing true justice. But how did that work? Was Violet transported back in time? Or was Amber transported to the future? I don't know.
The ending was unclear. I feel like it's wrong to say anything more than that. 

I will give this book a 2/5. Why? Because, in a honesty, this book was a jumbled mess. I just might not have the capacity to understand anything above my intelligence level. (Aka I'm stupid.) I know enough people grasped the concept of this book. I apologize for not understanding. If I did, I would be able to review this book more fairly than I do. 
I feel like I'm one of the only people who didn't like this book. Oh well. I can rock being a black sheep.

Cloudy with a 10% chance of rain

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